Free Solo: A Therapist Explores the Neuropsychology of Alex Honnold

A deep dive into the brain of the famous climber—and how performance psychology plays a role.


Free Solo gives us an insight into rock climber Alex Honnold’s process for tackling an insanely life-threatening climb—El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, with no equipment or ropes. 

So, how does performance psychology impact Honnold’s practice?

In today’s Psych Cinema, therapist Jonathan Hetterly discusses how Free Solo explores the psychological concepts of the fear response and the amygdala, dopamine and sensation-seeking activities, and performance psychology and the role of rehearsal.

Watch it here:

Psych Cinema is our video series where licensed professional counselor Jonathan Hetterly explores the psychology behind the films that he watches and loves.

To hear Jonathan Hetterly discuss the psychology behind other films he watches and loves, visit our YouTube channel.

Click here for more content by Jonathan Hetterly, LPC. 


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