Biofeedback for Strength and Conditioning Performance

by Gabrielle Smith
NSCA Coach July 2014
Vol 3, Issue 3


Biofeedback is a tool that not everyone knows about, yet many coaches and athletes could benefit from using it. This article will describe the psychophysiological principle, introduce biofeedback, and provide descriptions of two biofeedback modalities that may be useful for strength and conditioning professionals to improve performance.

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This article originally appeared in NSCA Coach, a quarterly publication for NSCA Members that provides valuable takeaways for every level of strength and conditioning coach. You can find scientifically based articles specific to a wide variety of your athletes’ needs with Nutrition, Programming, and Youth columns. Read more articles from NSCA Coach »



1. Biofeedback Certification International Alliance. The Biofeedback Certification International Alliance – Professional Standards and Ethical Principles of Biofeedback. Accessed July 2016 from
2. Green, EE, Green, AM, and Walters, ED. Voluntary control of internal states: Psychological and physiological. Journal of Transpersonal Psychology 2(1): 1-26, 1970.
3. Khazan, IZ. The Clinical Handbook of Biofeedback: A Step-by- Step Guide for Training and Practice with Mindfulness. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.; 2013.
4. Lagos, L, Vaschillo, E, Vaschillo, B, Lehrer, P, Bates, M, and Pandina, R. Heart rate variability biofeedback as a strategy for dealing with competitive anxiety: A case study. Biofeedback 36(3): 109-115, 2008.
5. Paul, M, and Greg, K. The effect of heart rate variability biofeedback on performance psychology of basketball players. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback 37(2): 131-144, 2012.
6. Wells, R, Outhred, T, Heathers, JA, Quintana, DS, and Kemp, AH. Matter over mind: A randomized-controlled trial of singlesession biofeedback training on performance anxiety and heart rate variability in musicians. PLOS ONE 7(10): 1-11, 2012.
7. Yucha, CB, and Montgomery, D. Evidence-Based Practice in Biofeedback and Neurofeedback (2nd ed.). Wheat Ridge, CO: Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback; 2008.

About the author

Gabrielle Smith, CPSS, CSCS

University of Kentucky

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