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Dec 3rd&5th - Psychology & Athletic Injuries.docx

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Western University
Kinesiology 1088A/B
Bob Larose

Psychology & Athletic Injuries (Chapter 19) Psychological factors can contribute to the cause of athletic injury and can facilitate recovery from them. Relationship between athletic injuries and psychological factors is primarily stress related (complex multiple interactions). Potentially stressful situations can contribute to injury based on how threatening the situation is perceived to be. Personality factors, major life changes/history of stressors, coping resources and intervention skills all influence the stress response and thus affect the probability of injury. Major life changes/history Coping Personality of stressors resources Muscle Tension Potentially stressful Stress Response INJURY situation Perception Attention/ of threat State Distractions anxiety Intervention skills Major life changes- when combined with few coping skills and little social support lead to a higher risk of athletic injury - Death, moving, marriage, economic status Stress: - Disrupts attention by narrowing peripheral field and causes distraction and irrelevant thoughts - Creates muscle tension that interferes with normal coordination - Giving all out effort often means playing hurt of taking undue risks which increases the probability of injury (must distinguish between discomfort of overload and pain of injury) - Some athletes look for attention by playing up or even faking an injury Reactions to Injury 1. Athlete made to feel worthless because they are being ignored and can’t contribute, so playing injured leads to more sever injury 2. Grief Response (Kubler-Ross, 1969) o Denial o Anger o Bargaining o Depression o Acceptance and reorganization - Injured athletes typically experience all five stages but the order, speed, ease and duration of moving through the and the significance given to each varies widely 3. Loss of identity as an athlete (self-concept) since many people define who they are through their sporting involvement
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