You are here

Gender Differences in Coping with Stress among Student-Athletes

Download pdf | Full Screen View

Date Issued:
2020
Abstract:
The purpose of this study is to understand how collegiate student athletes cope with stress and mental health concerns Specifically, I ask: (1) How does the role of being a student-athlete affect one’s mental health? (2) Are there gender differences in how student-athletes cope with stress? Using data from in-depth interviews with 10 male student-athletes and 10 female student-athletes, I found that the student-athlete experience had both positive and negative impacts on an individual’s stress and overall mental wellness. Student-athletes benefited from the collegiate athletic experience in various ways—including career opportunities and learned skills like time-management. However, student-athletes also endured large amounts of stress stemming from the role conflict involved in sport participation and academic performance. This research clearly proves the strong impact that gender roles and societal stigma has on the effects of role conflict for mental well-being. I found that gender impacted the sources of stress and how student-athletes understand the ways they are supposed to cope with stress. Studentathletes’ interpersonal relationships with teammates and coaches could either serve as a positive buffer from emotional challenges—or intensify the emotional struggles an athlete endures. Far too many athletes felt as though help-seeking behaviors signaled weakness. The majority of the athletes felt as though they would be better off handling emotional challenges on their own. Rather than identifying such mental health issues, student-athletes addressed these concerns as personal problems that were not crucial to their mental health. This research signifies the importance of understanding how studentathletes cope with both stress and the challenges related to role conflict and mental illness stigma.
Title: Gender Differences in Coping with Stress among Student-Athletes.
56 views
22 downloads
Name(s): Riggs, Sydney
Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters
Department of Sociology
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Capstone Project
Date Issued: 2020
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, FL
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 76 p.
Language(s): English
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to understand how collegiate student athletes cope with stress and mental health concerns Specifically, I ask: (1) How does the role of being a student-athlete affect one’s mental health? (2) Are there gender differences in how student-athletes cope with stress? Using data from in-depth interviews with 10 male student-athletes and 10 female student-athletes, I found that the student-athlete experience had both positive and negative impacts on an individual’s stress and overall mental wellness. Student-athletes benefited from the collegiate athletic experience in various ways—including career opportunities and learned skills like time-management. However, student-athletes also endured large amounts of stress stemming from the role conflict involved in sport participation and academic performance. This research clearly proves the strong impact that gender roles and societal stigma has on the effects of role conflict for mental well-being. I found that gender impacted the sources of stress and how student-athletes understand the ways they are supposed to cope with stress. Studentathletes’ interpersonal relationships with teammates and coaches could either serve as a positive buffer from emotional challenges—or intensify the emotional struggles an athlete endures. Far too many athletes felt as though help-seeking behaviors signaled weakness. The majority of the athletes felt as though they would be better off handling emotional challenges on their own. Rather than identifying such mental health issues, student-athletes addressed these concerns as personal problems that were not crucial to their mental health. This research signifies the importance of understanding how studentathletes cope with both stress and the challenges related to role conflict and mental illness stigma.
Identifier: FAUIR000382 (IID)
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/fd/FAUIR000382
Use and Reproduction: Copyright © is held by the author with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU

In Collections