Career Assistance to a Team in Crisis-Transition: An Intervention Case Study in Swedish Elite Handball

in Case Studies in Sport and Exercise Psychology
View More View Less
  • 1 Halmstad University
  • 2 Laurentian University
Restricted access

Purchase case

USD  $9.95

Student 1 year online subscription

USD  $40.00

1 year online subscription

USD  $53.00

Student 2 year online subscription

USD  $76.00

2 year online subscription

USD  $101.00

In this paper, the authors share how a career assistance program was developed, implemented, and evaluated with a Swedish elite handball team. Within this case study, the initial version of the career assistance program’s content was created based on the career-long psychological support services in a Swedish handball framework and the first author’s applied experiences. During implementation, the head coach was terminated unexpectedly, and the team appeared in a crisis. This transitional situation led to modification of the career assistance program to help the players cope with changes. Eighteen players took part in eight workshops dealing with various aspects of their sport and nonsport life (e.g., performance, training, lifestyle, recovery, and future planning) with crisis-related issues (e.g., coping with uncertainty) incorporated. Mixed-methods evaluation revealed the players’ perceived increase in personal resources (awareness and skills) and decrease in stress and fatigue. Reflections on working in applied sport psychology from a holistic perspective in a dynamic real-life setting are provided.

Ekengren, Stambulova, Johnson, and Ivarsson are with the Center of Research on Welfare, Health and Sport, Halmstad University, Halmstad, Sweden. Schinke is with the School of Kinesiology and Health Sciences, Laurentian University, Sudbury, ON, Canada.

Ekengren (johan.ekengren@hh.se) is corresponding author.
  • Andersen, M.B., & Waterson, A.K. (2017). A brief impressionistic history of paying attention: The roots of mindfulness. In S.J. Zizzi & M.B. Andersen (Eds.), Being mindful in sport and exercise psychology: Pathways for practitioners and students (pp. 1528). Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Arnold, R., Fletcher, D., & Daniels, K. (2017). Organisational stressors, coping, and outcomes in competitive sport. Journal of Sports Sciences, 35(7), 694703. PubMed ID: 27173730 doi:10.1080/02640414.2016.1184299

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dahl, J.C., Plumb, J.C., Stewart, I., & Lundgren, T. (2009). The art & science of valuing in psychotherapy. Helping clients discover, explore, and commit to valued action using acceptance and commitment therapy. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ekengren, J., Stambulova, N., Johnson, U., & Carlsson, I-M. (2018). Exploring career experiences of Swedish professional handball players: Consolidating first-hand information into an empirical career model. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 18(2), 156175. doi:10.1080/1612197X.2018.1486872

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ekengren, J., Stambulova, N., Johnson, U., Carlsson, I-M., & Ryba, T.V. (2020). Composite vignettes of Swedish male and female professional handball players’ career paths. Sport in Society, 23(4), 595612. doi:10.1080/17430437.2019.1599201

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ekengren, J., Stambulova, N., & Johnson, U. (2020b). Toward the career-long psychological support services: Insights from Swedish handball. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action. doi:10.1080/21520704.2020.1826615

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Haddad, M., Chaouachi, A., Wong, D.P., Castagna, C., Hambli, M., Hue, O., & Chamari, K. (2013). Influence of fatigue, stress, muscle soreness and sleep on perceived exertion during submaximal effort. Physiology & Behavior, 119, 185189. PubMed ID: 23816982 doi:10.1016/j.physbeh.2013.06.016

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hayes, S.C. (2019). A liberated mind: The essential guide to ACT. London, UK: Vermilion.

  • Hayes, S.C., Strosahl, K.D., & Wilson, K.G. (2012). Acceptance and commitment therapy: The process and practice of mindful change (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Henriksen, K. (2019). The values compass: Helping athletes act in accordance with their values through functional analysis. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 10(4), 199207. doi:10.1080/21520704.2018.1549637

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Henriksen, K., Schinke, R.J., Moesch, K., McCann, S., Parham, W.D., Larsen, C.H., & Terry, P. (2019). Consensus statement on improving the mental health of high performance athletes. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 18(5), 553560.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hodge, K., & Sharp, L.-A. (2016). Case studies. In B. Smith & A.C. Sparkes (Eds.), Routledge handbook of qualitative research in sport and exercise (pp. 6274). London, UK and New York, NY: Taylor & Francis Group.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hong, H.J., & Coffee, P. (2018). A psycho-educational curriculum for sport career transition practitioners: Development and evaluation. European Sport Management Quarterly, 18(3), 287306. doi:10.1080/16184742.2017.1387925

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hooper, S.L., & Mackinnon, L.T. (1995). Monitoring overtraining in athletes. Recommendations. Sports Medicine, 20(5), 321327. PubMed ID: 8571005 doi:10.2165/00007256-199520050-00003

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Keegan, R.J. (2014). Developing a philosophy and theoretical framework: Mapping a rich and complex landscape for the brave explorer. In J.G. Cremades & L.S. Tashman (Eds.), Becoming a sport, exercise, and performance psychology professional: A global perspective (pp. 6168). New York, NY: Routledge.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kendellen, K., Camiré, M., Bean, C.N., Forneris, T., & Thompson, J. (2017). Integrating life skills into Gold Canada’s youth programs: Insights into a successful research to practice partnership. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 8(1), 3446. doi:10.1080/21520704.2016.1205699

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Larsen, C.H., Alfermann, D., Henriksen, K., & Christensen, M.K. (2014). Preparing footballers for the next step: An intervention program from an ecological perspective. The Sport Psychologist, 28(1), 91102. doi:10.1123/tsp.2013-0015

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lavallee, D., Gorley, T., Lavallee, R.M., & Wylleman, P. (2001). Career development programs for athletes. In W. Patton & M. McMahon (Eds.), Career development programs: Preparation for life long career decision making (pp. 125133). Melbourne, Australia: Australian Council for Educational Research Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Muthén, B., & Asparouhov, T. (2012). Bayesian structural equation modeling: A more flexible representation of substantive theory. Psychological Methods, 17(3), 313335. PubMed ID: 22962886 doi:10.1037/a0026802

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Muthén, L.K., & Muthén, B.O. (2018). Mplus user’s guide (8th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Muthén & Muthén.

  • Pummell, E.K., & Lavallee, D. (2019). Preparing UK tennis academy players for the junior-to-senior transition: Development, implementation, and evaluation of an intervention program. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 40, 156164. doi:10.1016/j.psychsport.2018.07.007

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Schinke, R.J., & Stambulova, N. (2017). Context-driven sport and exercise psychology practice: Widening our lens beyond the athlete. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 8(2), 7175. doi:10.1080/21520704.2017.1299470

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Schinke, R.J., Stambulova, N., Si, G., & Moore, Z. (2018). International society of sport psychology position stand: Athletes’ mental health, performance, and development. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 16(6), 622639. doi:10.1080/1612197X.2017.1295557

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Smith, B. (2018). Generalizability in qualitative research: Misunderstandings, opportunities, and recommendations for the sport and exercise sciences. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 10(1), 137149. doi:10.1080/2159676X.2017.1393221

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Song, X.Y., & Lee, S.Y. (2012). Basic and advanced Bayesian structural equation modeling: With applications in the medical and behavioral sciences. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stambulova, N. (2010). Counseling athletes in career transitions: The five-step career planning strategy. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 1(2), 95105. doi:10.1080/21520704.2010.528829

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stambulova, N. (2017). Crisis-transitions in athletes: Current emphases on cognitive and contextual factors. Current Opinion in Psychology, 16, 6266. PubMed ID: 28813358 doi:10.1016/j.copsyc.2017.04.013

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stambulova, N., Ryba, T.V., & Henriksen, K. (2020). Career development and transitions of athletes: The international society of sport psychology position stand revisited. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. Advance online publication. doi:10.1080/1612197X.2020.1737836

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stambulova, N., & Wylleman, P. (2014). Athletes’ career development and transitions. In A. Papaioannou & D. Hackfort (Eds.), Routledge companion to sport and exercise psychology (pp. 605621). London, UK: Routledge.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stenling, A., Ivarsson, A., Johnson, U., & Lindwall, M. (2015). Bayesian structural equation modeling in sport and exercise psychology. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 37(4), 410420. PubMed ID: 26442771 doi:10.1123/jsep.2014-0330

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tod, D., Andersen, M.B., & Marchant, D.B. (2011). Six years up: Applied sport psychologists surviving (and thriving) after graduation. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 23(1), 93109. doi:10.1080/10413200.2010.534543

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Torregrossa, M., Regüela, S., & Mateos, M. (2020). Career assistance programs. In D. Hackfort & R.J. Schinke (Eds.), The Routledge international encyclopedia of sport and exercise psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 7388). London, UK: Routledge.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wylleman, P., Theeboom, M., & Lavallee, D. (2004). Successful athletic careers. In C. Spielberger (Ed.), Encyclopedia of applied sport psychology (Vol 3, pp. 511517). New York, NY: Elsevier.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Yuan, Y., & MacKinnon, D.P. (2009). Bayesian mediation analysis. Psychological Methods, 14(4), 301322. PubMed ID: 19968395 doi:10.1037/a0016972

  • Zyphur, M.J., & Oswald, F.L. (2015). Bayesian estimation and inference: A user’s guide. Journal of Management, 41(2), 390420. doi:10.1177/0149206313501200

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 344 344 113
Full Text Views 26 26 13
PDF Downloads 15 15 9