Steve Portenga Sports Psychologist

Sports Psychologist Steve Portenga - The Psychology of Success

As Denver’s most experienced sports and performance psychologist, Steve Portenga helps clients become people that engage in achieving their potential, that believe in their ability to perform under pressure, and that express a confidence that they are somebody that matters in life. Steve helps performers of all kinds develop a Positive Performance Mindset® that allows them to perform up to their potential. Steve hates to see underperformance and lack of enjoyment. He’s dedicated to developing cutting edge integration of science and practice to help all performers achieve their goals today so they can realize their life’s potential tomorrow.

The simple mental skills most practitioners teach are not enough to manage pressure. His approach adds value because he comprehensively addresses all performance issues. His clients’ change is meaningful and this change holds up when it matters. He incorporates biofeedback to evaluate and actually train the mind-body connection.

He individualizes services using a proprietary process that scientifically integrates performance, neuroscience, behavior change, and technology. He’s a true expert on the psychology of high performance: he has been credentialed at the Olympics, helped win a SuperBowl, founded a graduate program, and wrote APA’s definition of performance psychology.

Steve offers an exceptional presentation in the field of performance psychology. He has spoken at conferences and workshops around the world and has published several research papers and book chapters. Steve isn’t an ivory tower academics: he’s an experienced professional and an expert. He’s talented, engaging and enjoys teaching groups to excel.

Speech Topics:

  • Developing an Olympic Mindset: What can Normal People Learn from the Olympics?
  • The Performing Brain™: Thriving Under Pressure
  • Parenting Elite Performers to Excellence: Performance Psychology for Parents
  • Becoming a Rehab Master: Maximize Your Return to Sport After Injury
  • Sport and Performance Psychology: What’s in it for Academic Talent Development?

Are you ready to schedule Steve Portenga to inspire your team?

Email: or Call: 1.720.507.4320

Steve Portenga talks about Sport and Performance Psychology

Steve's Testimonials

Kentucky Derby Winning Team

Thank you for all you did for me during our Derby Campaign! You’re thoughts and advice were priceless…….so helpful

Track & Field National Champion

“I finally put myself out there and took risks!! I’m so happy! Thank you so much, my mindset changed so much after our talk!”

NCAA All-American Athlete

I just wanted to thank you for all the help you’ve given me in the past couple of months.  I feel like I have a better mental outlook on running (and life!) than I did before I started.

HS Football Athlete (Senior)

“What I have learned so far should be taught to every student”

Mom of HS State Champion

Hi Steve, I’ve been meaning to email you for the last few months but when XXX won 5A state yesterday on a dive he couldn’t do last fall, I had to get it done. To set it up, he led most of the meet with his Regis team mate right behind him the whole time.  In high school, he likes to do his high scoring dives first to get in the lead.  For state, the divers compete their first 8 dives during prelims in the morning. There aren’t many people in the crowd because swimmers have their prelims the afternoon before but the last 3 dives are part of finals when it is very loud and energetic.  His twisters are big crowd pleasers but they are also his best so he chooses to compete them in the morning and saves two of his toughest dives for finals when he should be well ahead. Going into the last dive, XXX was in first by just 6 points. His teammate had a front 3 1/2 for his last dive and usually did not score too high because it is such a tough dive. This time he nailed it leaving XXX needing a very good dive on a dive that he has consistently performed but still scared him to do. His high school goal is to win state four years in a row and being the defending champion, there was a huge amount of pressure to do it again. Since he won, you know he did it and I can’t tell you how proud I was of him for diving his hardest dive under extreme pressure. You obviously gave him some great tools to deal with his fear so thank you for that.  I’ve included a link to an interview done in Grand Junction yesterday. Thanks again, His Mom

Mom of HS State Champion

XXX has been doing so well lately that parents are starting to ask who has been helping him so I hope it is ok if I shared your contact info with another diving family. The diver is XXX and her mom is XXX.  We just got back from Riverside, CA where XXX won West Nationals on both 1 meter and 3 meter.  He literally crushed the competition and bettered his personal best score on 3 meter by almost 60 points.  I’ve included a link to a YouTube video in case you haven’t ever seen him dive.  The dive that gave him the most trouble before has become one of his favorites.  Thanks for all you have done for him.

Weekend Warrior

It worked!  you da man.  my best finish by a lot. so even a moderate “beginner’s” shift in my focus at the beginning changed my race by quite a bit!

Elite/NCAA Gymnast

The psychology techniques that I learned from you have proven very valuble in my career thus far, so I thank you for that. You can absolutely say that! But I would add that it has proven very valuable in both my athletic and professional career. I try and apply the same techniques in my finance career and it has been extremely useful! I find that I am able to dial in and focus when it counts and also control my nerves during presentations.

Kona Ironman- Age Group Podium

Many thanks from the bottom of my heart. Words can’t express!!! It all worked Dr.Steve!!

Mom of Youth Athlete (age 11)

She had a good meet this past weekend. Her coach actually said to me at one point that she could see the strategies you have been working on with XXX coming together. She said she seemed to be managing her stress level, and was able to calm herself down when she needed to and not let things go off the rails – so that is all very promising.

COLLAB 2016 Teachers (Feedback from a recent presentation on Growth Mindset to teachers)

The discussion about growth mindset was helpful for working with other staff members and to help myself grow professionally.

I was interested in learning how to use mindset in the classroom to work with my students. Attending the Growth Mindset session helped me learn how language and approaching problems with an open mindset in my own career and with my students can be beneficial. I plan to use specific language cues in my classroom to help my students approach problems differently.

This class helped empower me to be more confident in my thinking and actions in all aspects of my life
Take it all in and enjoy. The workshop does a great job of level setting and providing concrete suggestions for management of fixed mindset tendencies.

Dr. Steve has brought his passion for the psychology of performance to a variety of situations and has been invited to speak all over the world.

Are you ready to schedule Steve Portenga to inspire your team?

Email: or Call: 1.720.507.4320