Thriving, Depleted, and At-Risk Canadian Coaches: Profiles of Psychological Functioning Linked to Self-Regulation and Stress

in International Sport Coaching Journal
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The purposes of this study were to (a) identify profiles of psychological functioning based on burnout and well-being indices within a sample of 250 Canadian developmental and high performance sport coaches, and (b) investigate whether coaches in these profiles differed in their capacity to self-regulate and their perceptions of stress. Using a two-stage cluster analysis, three profiles of psychological functioning were identified: (a) thriving (n = 135, characterized by relatively low burnout and relatively high well-being), (b) depleted (n = 36, characterized by relatively high burnout and relatively low well-being), and (c) at-risk (n = 79, characterized by relatively high burnout and moderate well-being). Follow-up analyses revealed that coaches within the thriving profile reported significantly higher self-regulation capacity and lower perceived stress than coaches in the at-risk and depleted profiles, while depleted coaches reported significantly higher perceived stress than at-risk coaches. Moreover, longer coaching hours and remuneration for one’s coaching also differentiated depleted from thriving coaches. Findings are discussed in light of the dual-continua model of mental health and practical recommendations are put forth to help coaches strengthen their capacity to self-regulate and manage their perceptions of stress to optimize psychological functioning.

Kylie McNeill and Natalie Durand-Bush are with the School of Human Kinetics at the University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Pierre-Nicolas Lemyre is with the Department of Coaching and Psychology at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Oslo, Norway.

Address author correspondence to Kylie McNeill at kyliemcneill@gmail.com.
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