Title of Abstract

A Sports Psychology Approach to Exercise and Athletic Participation in Individuals with Physical or Mental Disabilities: A Comprehensive Review

College

College of Education

Department

Department of Physical Education, Sport, and Human Performance

Faculty Mentor

Joni Boyd, Ph.D.

Abstract

The purpose of this review of literature was to investigate the effects of sports and performance psychology techniques and theories when applied to athletic and non-athletic populations with physical or mental disabilities. Sports psychology is often utilized with elite athletes to serve as a competitive edge to increase their likelihood of exceling in their respective sports through improved mentality. Research is lacking within a large area of the athletic community: athletes with physical and mental disabilities. Additionally, physical activity is important for individuals with physical and mental disabilities. Implementing sports and performance psychology findings can help promote exercise and physical activity within inactive populations, as well. Doing so offers an outlet for frustrations surrounding the disease and promotes a healthy lifestyle. This review serves to investigate the research available as it pertains to the motives and stressors of athletes (more frequently elite athletes) with disabilities and the benefits that these findings and exercise in general can have on this population. The studies within this review of literature examine imagery, motivational factors, self-talk, stressors, and engagement. The results found can help to increase athletic performance, increase participation in athletic events, and promote physical activities and an increased quality of life through both physical and mental health in persons with physical and mental disabilities.

Start Date

24-4-2020 12:00 AM

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Apr 24th, 12:00 AM

A Sports Psychology Approach to Exercise and Athletic Participation in Individuals with Physical or Mental Disabilities: A Comprehensive Review

The purpose of this review of literature was to investigate the effects of sports and performance psychology techniques and theories when applied to athletic and non-athletic populations with physical or mental disabilities. Sports psychology is often utilized with elite athletes to serve as a competitive edge to increase their likelihood of exceling in their respective sports through improved mentality. Research is lacking within a large area of the athletic community: athletes with physical and mental disabilities. Additionally, physical activity is important for individuals with physical and mental disabilities. Implementing sports and performance psychology findings can help promote exercise and physical activity within inactive populations, as well. Doing so offers an outlet for frustrations surrounding the disease and promotes a healthy lifestyle. This review serves to investigate the research available as it pertains to the motives and stressors of athletes (more frequently elite athletes) with disabilities and the benefits that these findings and exercise in general can have on this population. The studies within this review of literature examine imagery, motivational factors, self-talk, stressors, and engagement. The results found can help to increase athletic performance, increase participation in athletic events, and promote physical activities and an increased quality of life through both physical and mental health in persons with physical and mental disabilities.