Michael Gervais

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Dr. Michael Gervais (born 1971) is a sport psychologist and entrepreneur, best known for working with the NFL's Seattle Seahawks[1] and being the high performance coach of Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner.[2]


In 1993, Gervais received his B.A. degree in Psychology from Loyola Marymount University. In 1998, he graduated with a M.A. from California State University, Long Beach, and earned a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2004 from San Diego University, integrative studies.

Sport and Performance Psychologist[edit]

Using a multidisciplinary combining psychology, kinesiology, spirituality and environmental conditions, Gervais underlines psychological factors that affect and accelerate human performance.[3] He encourages athletes to meditate, a technique long perceived as unusual in the sport environment, and considers mental discipline as part of athletes’ training.[4]

Red Bull Stratos[edit]

In October 2012, as Red Bull Stratos space diving project became uncertain due to skydiver Felix Baumgartner’s claustrophobia, Michael Gervais was called in to psychologically evaluate the jumper and eventually helped him get over his fear, via self-talk and what Gervais named “combat-breathing”.[5]

Seattle Seahawks[edit]

As part of the Seattle Seahawks staff, Gervais implemented an integrated psychological approach. He participated in Super Bowl XLVIII and Super Bowl XLIX.[6]

Other athletes[edit]

Michael Gervais has contributed at two Olympic games as a sport psychologist (2012 summer Olympics in London and 2016 summer Olympics in Rio) with women's beach volleyball and the indoor women’s National Team. He coached three-time Olympic gold volleyball player Kerri Walsh Jennings, as well as snowboarders, swimmers, basketball players and golfers.[7]


Gervais has partnered with head coach of the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks Pete Carroll a consulting venture, Compete to Create, to build a mindset and culture training business for corporate clients : Compete to Create. Commercial airplane manufacturer Boeing, multinational technology company Microsoft[8] and video game developer Zynga are among their clients,[9] as well as top business executives.[10]

Michael Gervais founded the Pinnacle Performance Center[11] and hosts The Finding Mastery podcast, exploring specific psychological tools of people on the path to mastery.[12][13]