Perfectionism functions as a transdiagnostic risk factor for a variety of negative mental health outcomes, including eating disorders. Female athletes are believed to be especially vulnerable to eating pathology and some aspects of perfectionism. However, it is unknown whether perfectionism functions similarly as a risk factor in athlete and non-athlete groups with regards to negative eating behaviors and body attitudes. The present study assessed the moderating effect of athletic involvement on the relationship between dimensions of perfectionism and disordered eating symptomology among collegiate women competing at an amateur level. Female undergraduates (N = 478) were categorized into the following subgroups based on athlete status: aesthetic sport athletes, team/individual sport athletes, and non-athletes. Results indicated that levels of perfectionism and disordered eating symptomology did not differ between groups. However, both athletic involvement as a whole and type of sport played each moderated the relationship between dimensions of perfectionism and disordered eating, demonstrating that continued efforts to educate collegiate women about healthy eating and exercise behavior are still of critical importance for their overall well-being.
Pooja Somasundaram and Alexandra M. Burgess
Kendahl Shortway, Marina Oganesova, and Andrew Vincent
Sexual assault is highly prevalent among the population of college students, which includes student-athletes. The context of athletics introduces unique risk factors related to alcohol consumption and aspects of sport culture, opportunities for prevention, and ethical considerations and consequences of disclosing and reporting sexual assault. Sport psychology practitioners are closely connected to athletes, and they can potentially serve an important and influential role in prevention and response to sexual assault. In this article, we review literature on sexual assault in college, highlight relevant aspects of the athletic context, summarize legislation and ethical considerations pertinent to sexual assault reporting, and provide practical recommendations for sport psychology practitioners so that they may contribute to preventative efforts and better serve student-athletes who are victims and survivors of sexual assault.
Mitch Abrams and Michelle L. Bartlett
The #MeToo movement has brought long needed attention to the epidemic of sexual assault and sexual violence. In the world of sports, the need to prevent and address such acts requires individuals with training in clinical, forensic and sport psychology. These professionals must have particular understanding of the dynamics of sexual violence within the athletic and sport culture. This paper serves to highlight context-specific approaches to pertinent identification and treatment issues. An overview of sexual abuse victim and perpetrator identification will be offered. In addition to the introduction of risk assessment and recommendation of comprehensive prevention programming, treatment needs in the athletic context will be explored. Group-level interventions currently being utilized will be reviewed, recommended topic areas to be covered in protocols will be enumerated and suggestions for systemic and cultural change in the sport domain will be offered.
Kristoffer Henriksen, Louise Kamuk Storm, Natalia Stambulova, Nicklas Pyrdol, and Carsten Hvid Larsen
This study is focused on reflections of expert sport psychology practitioners about their interventions with competitive youth and senior elite athletes. Two objectives include: (1) to identify key structural components used by practitioners to describe sport psychology interventions and integrate them into an empirical framework, and (2) to analyze the practitioners’ experiences in regard of their successful and less successful interventions in competitive youth and elite senior sport contexts using the empirical framework. We conducted semi-structured interviews with twelve internationally recognized sport psychology practitioners (SPPs) and analyzed the data thematically. The empirical framework derived from the SPPs’ accounts contains eight structural components integrated into two categories: (1) the content and focus (with three components, e.g., adaptation of content), and (2) the organization and delivery of interventions (with five components, e.g., initiation and assessment of athletes’ needs). Using the empirical framework we found differences between successful and less successful interventions and between youth and senior contexts in terms of needs assessment, adaptation and breadth of content, athlete-practitioner relationship, and intervention settings. The empirical framework might inform SPPs in their efforts to design, implement, and evaluate their services in these two contexts.