«Excellence in performance begins with a dream.»
Guido Schilling

Welcome to the homepage of Guido Schilling, award wining expert in and promoter of Sport Psychology in Europe and in the World.

In 1965 as a student Guido Schilling participated at the 1. World Congress for Sport Psychology held in Rome. Since that first contact with Sport Psychology both Sport and Psychology kept him busy.

With degrees in Physical Education and in Applied Psychology he worked as a pioneer in the field of Teaching Sport Psychology and also in Coaching and Consulting. He was engaged in national and international organisations for Sport Psychology and presided FEPSAC (Fédération Européenne de Psychologie des Sport et des Activités Corporelles) from 1975 to 1983. He edited several books on Sport Psychology, and was organizer of meetings and congresses.

Sport Psychology as the study of human beings and their behaviour in sport was always connected to the Olympic Idea "citius, altius, fortius" or "faster, higher, stronger". All sport and exercise activities are accompanied by mental phenomena. Guido Schilling was always fascinated by excellence in performance and excellence in life.

The roots of an academic Sport Psychology in Europe go back  to the Olympic Congress with  the topic “Psychology and Physiology of Sports“ held in Lausanne (Switzerland) in 1913, initiated by Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the New Olympic Games starting in 1896 in Paris. Coubertin claimed for an equilibrium between the physiological and the psychological view to look at sport activities in training and competition.

Sport Psychology as a scientific discipline as well as a professional field has three focal points: research, application and teaching. Psychological assistance in coaching and consulting is asked by athletes, coaches and sport governing bodies in order to improve athletic performance and reach excellence.


Some people especially in sport want to do their best. They want to performe on their highest level and reach their personal best performance. They work out for years to higher their goals. There is a rule that a human being needs ten years of daily training to reach excellence with his or her personal best.

Sport Psychology took a first step towards its development as a sport science in 1913, together with sport medicine. It started under the propitious circumstances of a first congress with the topic "The International Congress of Sports Psychology and Sports Physiology" in Lausanne (Switzerland) under the Presidency of the famous Baron Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the New Olympic Games starting in 1896 in Paris.


Today, sport and the sport sciences would not be conceivable without the essential complement of Sport Psychology. Coaches and athletes want to apply Sport Psychology in practice, knowing that it can provide advice and techniques in the pursuit of excellence. Not only top level athletes, but also other high achievers require psychological advice and assistance. They want to learn how to develop a more positive outlook, to experience flow in performing and to focus the commitment and overcome obstacles on the way to reach excellence.
The first element to reach high goals in sport and in life is your commitment to persue your dream.
Luzia Ebnöther Silvermedaillist Olympic Games 2002

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Sport Psychology is the study of psychological factors that influence physical activity and are influenced by physical activity and sport.

Sport Psychology professionals are interested to know more about psychological factors in athletic performance in respect to enhance them and overcome obstacles that prevent athletes and teams from reaching their potential on their way to excellence.

• Mental training can not replace physical training.
• Like physical abilities also mental abilities can be improved by regular training.
• Very often mental training is not used regularly but only in difficult situations.


Together with athletes and coaches Guido Schilling worked out a psychological training program, the Human Potential Training (HPT). This program gives the opportunity to work on those mental factors an athlete or coach wants to improve.

1. HPT is a package of psychological procedures to be applied in different sport activities in training and competition, before, during and after.

2. HPT combines elements of psychoregulation and mental training, to bring body and mind on a high level in an equilibrium.

3. HPT is not a new theory, but a collection of tools enabling athletes and coaches to find the optimal state in preparing and in performing athletic performances.

The Elements of HPT:

1. Goal Setting with Self-Confidence
2. Positive Thinking
3. Visualisation and Imagination
4. Concentration
5. Motivation and Commitment
6. Regeneration and Relaxation


Guido Schilling offers his cooperation to Top Teams and Top Athletes in:

• Beachvolleyball (women)
• Canoe (men and women)
• Curling (men and women)
• Cycling (road and artistic, men and women)
• Modern Pentathlon (women)
• Skiing (alpine and cross country, men and women)

They all profit or profited from his knowledge as a leading expert in Sport Psychology.

Author of more than 200 articles in Reviews and Journals and Editor of

12 Congress Proceedings
23 Books on Coaching
25 Books on Sport Sciences


• 1992 | State-of-the-Art Review of Sport Psychology, in: Sport Science Review,1.2, Champaign IL
• 1980 | Psychoregulative Procedures in Swiss Sport, in: International Journal of Sport Psychology, Nr. 3
• 1978 | Violence in Sport, in: Geweld in de Sport, Congress Proceedings, Bruxelles
• 1972 | Sportpsychologie (Stichwort) in: Lexikon der Psychologie (Hrsg. Arnold, Eysenck, Meili; Herder Verlag, Basel, Freiburg, Wien)


• 2009 | 40 Jahre Trainerbildung Swiss Olympic, with Arturo Hotz
• 2008 | Interview appeared in Mobile 5/08 (de | fr | it)
• 2005 | Aspects of Sport Governance, with Darlene Kluka and William Stier, Jr., Meyer&Meyer, Oxford. Aspects of Sport Governance is an informative guide on how to successfully and ethically operate a sport organisation. This volume provides a valuable insight into the structure of large sport organisations, elite sport development, compliance with best practice government systems as well as into ethics and leadership. Extensive resources and articles are included in the appendix, in addition to supporting documents of declarations and recommendations.
• 2003/04 | Psicologia e Sport, in: "Sport.Etiche.Culture. Giovani.Scuola.Medicina.", edited by Bizzini Lucio et al., Panathlon International, Rapallo (also in english)
• 2003 | Sport Psychology in Europe, with Erwin Apitzsch, FEPSAC Monograph Series, Nr. 2
• 2001 | The Business of Sport, with Darlene Kluka, Meyer& Meyer, Oxford
• 2001 | Psychische Aspekte der sportlichen Leistung, with Monika Biedermann and Sabine Rehmer, GFS Schriften Nr. 25, ETH Zürich (incl. CD-Rom "Sportpsychologie?")

To order the publications, please contact Guido.
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Mein Lauf durchs Leben...

In Basel kam ich am 17. März 1939 zur Welt und besuchte dort auch die Primarschule (1946-1950) und das Humanistische Gymnasium (1950-1958). Nach der Matur zog es mich in die weite Welt.
Ein Stipendium ermöglichte mir ein Studienjahr (1958/59) am Williams College in Williamstown (USA). Englisch wurde dabei für mich zu einer wichtigen Sprache, die mir Reisen in und Kontakte auf der ganzen Welt ermöglichte.

... and in English

I was born on March,17th,1939 in Basel (Switzerland), where I finished school with a Liberal arts A-level in 1958 at the "Humanistisches Gymnasium". With a scholarship I could travel (by boat!) to the US and enrole as an exchange student at a liberal art college in Williamstown (Mass.). To be a student at Williams College was an exiting and also very challenging year.
Back in Switzerland I got a diploma as a P.E.-teacher at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich. I got married to Christina Thöni from Meiringen. She is also a P.E.-teacher. We lived outside Zurich, Zurich the Little Big City.
In 1967 I got a Ph.D "magna cum laude" in Applied Psychology at the University of Zurich.
After some years working in Human Resources I decided to go back to sport in order to combine my two deegres. By the Swiss Institute for Sports in Magglingen I was asked to developp the Swiss Coach Education Program, later I was responsable for the library and the audiovisual means in teaching, and finally I became vicedirector of the Magglinger Institute.
In 1971 we moved with our family from Zurich to Magglingen.
Christina started a dance studio in Biel and in 1987 she could open up her own dance center. She also directed a dance group of 15 children and youngesters, the KiJu Dance Company (
In 1985 I was asked to come back to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology as head of the P.E.-Departement. Every year we got more students. From about 30 per year we went on to more than 100 students per year. With so called "Complementary studies" we prepared the P.E.-students also for other professional fields in "the world of sport" beside teaching in a school.

My time at ETH Zurich was very busy and very challenging. To have more time for applied Sport Psychology and for publications I decided to leave Zurich and ETH in September 2001 and to start Excellence:C&C, Excellence Coaching & Consulting.


Psychology & Sport Psychology
- Universities of Basel and Bern 1968 - 1975
- Institute for Applied Psychology in Zürich 1968 and 2003
- Swiss Federal University for Sports in Magglingen 1968 - 1985
- University of Hamburg (Germany) as visiting Professor in 1979
- University of Zürich 1995
- ETH Zürich 1985-2001
Alltogether almost 100 dissertations with topics on Sport Psychology were guided.

Sport Management
Directing the training colleges for Sport Manager offered by Swiss Olympic 1971-1986
Sport Psychology & Coaching Sciences
Together with Oscar Plattner (World Champion in Cycling) in courses for Cycling Coaches organised by the Olympic Solidarity Program in
- 1978 Bagdad (Irak)
- 1978 Hongkong
- 1978 Manila (Philippines)
- 1980 Kunming (China)
- 1981 Wellington (New Zealand)

Magglingen Symposia
Directing 5 Magglingen Symposia between 1974 and 1985
Spotlight as Presenter - 1976 Aggression in Sport, at the Preolympic Congress in Montreal (Canada)
- 1980 Education, Sport and Society, at the Preolympic Congress in Tbilisi (Ex-Sovietunion)
- 1983 Emotion in Sport, at the FEPSAC Congress in Magglingen (Switzerland)
- 1993 Mental Training, at the 1. International Congress on Physical Education in Isfahan (Iran)
- 2003 Sport Psychology in Europe, at the FEPSAC Congress in Kopenhagen (Danmark)


- Founding Director of the Swiss Coaching Courses (1969 - 1974) - SASP Swiss Association for Sport Psychology (since1968) - Ombudsman for „Sport“, the Swiss sport newspaper (1986 - 1988)

- FEPSAC: Fédération Européene de Psychologie des Sports et des Activités Corporelles. Member since 1966, President 1975 - 1983
- ISSP: International Society for Sport Psychology. Board Member 1987 - 1989
- ICSSPE: International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education. Member Editorial Board 1999 - 2001
- Liechtenstein: Monitoring in 1992 the merger of the former FLSV (Fürstlich Liechtensteinischer Sportverband), the LOK (Liechtensteinisches Olympisches Komitee), the SLSH (Stiftung Liechtensteiner Sporthilfe) into the LOSV (Liechtensteinischer Olympischer Sportverband).

Member of Reviewteams
- 1989 for theThesis of Prince Jeyakumar, Annamali University (India):
Adjustment Problems and Anxiety among habitual Joggers and sedentary Men
- 1995 for the European Review of 10 Institutes of PE (Physical Education)
- 2002 for the PE Departement of the University of Göttingen (Germany)
- 2004 for the PE Departement of the University of Basel (Switzerland)

Honorary Member
- VDT (Swiss Coaching Association) since 1999
- SASP (Swiss Association for Sport Psychology) since 2000
- Editorial Board of ICSSPE (International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education) since 2001
Do you want to contact Guido? Please use the form below.