Le bracelet power balance : que la force…mentale soit avec toi !

Informer > Articles > Psychologie du sport
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2579688_origLes explications de l’engouement pour ce bracelet sont multiples et complexes. Mais la polémique s’élève surtout sur son efficacité. Le bracelet Power balance est-il efficace ? Nous aurions tendance, nous les psychologues du sport, à répondre…oui à son efficacité, mais sur le plan psychologique!

Les exemples de gris-gris, de talismans, de croyances, de pratiques ritualisées dans le sport foisonnent : le crâne talisman de Barthez (ancien gardien de football de l’équipe de France), l’étude des ondes d’un stade quelque mois avant les jeux olympique d’Athènes pour améliorer la performance de la sprinteuse Christine Arron (la sprinteuse guadeloupéenne travaillait avec une psychothérapeute-énergéticienne), la casquette d’Elie Baup (ex-entraîneur de football), les aimants placés sur les oreilles qui prémunissent de la douleur… Mais ces croyances ne sont pas l’apanage des sportifs de haut niveau. Quel sportif ne rechausse pas la chaussette qui lui a permis de gagner, ne vérifie pas la présence de son porte bonheur dans son sac, ou encore n’achète pas la dernière paire de chaussures de son champion ? Pourtant, nous savons tous que ce n’est pas la chaussette qui nous a fait gagner ni la chaussure qui fait courir vite, ni le porte bonheur qui nous immunise contre la défaite !

Ces pratiques relève de croyances et de rituels qui visent à accroître la confiance en soi et à juguler certaines angoisses engendrées par la compétition. Dans le sport de haut niveau, le stress, les angoisses et la pression sont telles que le recours à de telles pratiques sont extrêmement fréquentes. Ces croyances et rituels sont de véritables placebos.

Le bracelet power balance relève de ces croyances et son effet placébo peut en effet être spectaculaire. Des études sur les effets placebo de certaines substances nous renseignent sur la puissance du psychisme sur le corps. En matière de placébo, le contexte revêt une importance maximale. Par exemple, lorsque le sujet est placé dans des situations d’anxiété fortes, l’efficacité du placébo dépasse parfois les 85%. Rappelons que le placébo est une substance (ou une action) inerte administrée dans le dessein de soigner (ou d’améliorer). Il n’a logiquement et rationnellement aucun pouvoir réel de soigner ou d’améliorer. Il relève donc de processus psychologiques. Ces effets ont aussi un impact majeur sur l‘organique. On sait par exemple que l’on peut, grâce à une poudre quelconque, modifier les paramètres comme la tension artérielle, l’acidité gastrique, le taux de cholestérol ou le nombre de globule blancs. Ce qui montre la sensibilité du système immunitaire à la suggestion.

ronaldo-power-balanceLe contexte de l’effet bracelet power balance possède les ingrédients, mais uniquement commerciales, de son succès. De nombreux sportifs emblématiques comme le basketteurs Shaquille O’Neal, le conducteur de F1 Rubens Barichello, le footballeur Christiano Ronaldo, le dernieur vainqueur du tour de France Alberto Contador ou encore le sélectionneur de l’équipe de France de football Laurent Blanc portent ces fameux bracelets. Prenons l’exemple de Laurent blanc et l’image qu’il véhicule: un parcours sportif marqué par la réussite, vainqueur de la coupe du monde de football, un homme posé, qui transpire le sérieux et le pragmatisme. Dans l’esprit d’autrui : « Si lui le porte, c’est qu’il doit y avoir une raison, une preuve de son efficacité ! Alors pourquoi pas moi ! » C’est le doux mélange des croyances et des rumeurs ; Le fameux : « il n’y a pas de fumée sans feu ».

L’alchimie gagnante du bracelet power balance : une bonne dose de croyances et une identification à des figures emblématiques du sport auxquelles se rajoute la recherche éperdue de performance, le tout dans un contexte où le courant énergétique et les émotions a le vent en poupe. Les thérapies psycho-énergétiques connaissent en ce moment une ferveur certaine.

Sur les stades, dans les salles, nous avons largement progressé dans le sens d’un entraînement de plus en plus scientifique avec des séances de plus en plus spécifiques, basées sur les recherches physiologiques et médicales mais nous sommes d’une pauvreté tout aussi spectaculaire dans l’entraînement psychologique et la préparation mentale. Si presque tous les entraîneurs reconnaissent que le mental est un facteur essentiel et déterminant de la performance et que la préparation mentale améliore dans 85% des cas la performance et ceci de façon significative, la préparation mentale sur le terrain est à l’état embryonnaire. D’où l’importante quantité de comprimés, solutions injectables, de gris-gris et de talismans que l’on récence dans les grandes compétitions. Or l’esprit humain contient bien plus de ressources et d’efficacités que toute cette panoplie de « potions magiques ».

Si l’on ne change pas les mentalités, tous les bracelets power balance ont de beaux jours devant eux…

Nathalie Crépin
Florence Delerue

Référence : l’ouvrage de Patrick Lemoine : « Le mystère du placebo » aux éditions Odile Jacob, Paris, 1996.

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