University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Blurred Lines: Performance Enhancement, Common Mental Disorders and Referral in the U.K. Athletic Population

Roberts, Claire-Marie, Faull, Andrea and Tod, D. (2016) Blurred Lines: Performance Enhancement, Common Mental Disorders and Referral in the U.K. Athletic Population. Frontiers in Psychology. ISSN Online: 1664-1078

[img] Text
Blurred lines_Performance enhancement common mental disorders and referral in the UK athletic population_v5_15 06 16.pdf - Accepted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (423kB) | Request a copy
Text (Version of Record)
Faull-2016-VoR-4360- Blurred-lines-performance-enhancement-common-mental-disorders-and-referral-in-the-UK-athletic-population.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (393kB) | Preview


Through the awareness-raising efforts of several high-profile current and former athletes, the issue of common mental disorders (CMD) in this population is gaining increasing attention from researchers and practitioners alike. Yet the prevalence is unclear and most likely, under-reported. Whilst the characteristics of the sporting environment may generate CMD within the athletic population, it also may exacerbate pre-existing conditions, and hence it is not surprising that sport psychology and sport science practitioners are anecdotally reporting increased incidences of athletes seeking support for CMDs. In a population where there are many barriers to reporting and seeking help for CMD, due in part to the culture of the high performance sporting environment, anecdotal reports suggest that those athletes asking for help are approaching personnel who they are most comfortable talking to. In some cases, this may be a sport scientist, the sport psychologist or sport psychology consultant. Among personnel in the sporting domain, there is a perception that the sport psychologist or sport psychology consultant is best placed to assist athletes seeking assistance for CMD. However, sport psychology as a profession is split by two competing philosophical perspectives; one of which suggests that sport psychologists should work exclusively with athletes on performance enhancement, and the other views the athlete more holistically and accepts that their welfare may directly impact on their performance. To add further complication, the development of the profession of sport psychology varies widely between countries, meaning that practice in this field is not always clearly defined. This article examines case studies that illustrate the blurred lines in applied sport psychology practice, highlighting challenges with the process of referral in the U.K. athletic population. The article concludes with suggestions for ensuring the field of applied sport psychology is continually evolving and reconfiguring to ensure that it continues to meet the demands of its clients.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information:

This Document is Protected by copyright and was first published by Frontiers. All rights reserved. It is reproduced with permission.

Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: common mental disorders, referral, elite athletes, case study, clinical psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > School of Sport and Exercise Science
Related URLs:
Copyright Info: Open Access journal
Depositing User: Claire-Marie Roberts
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2016 10:02
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2020 08:21

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item
Worcester Research and Publications is powered by EPrints 3 which is developed by the School of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton. More information and software credits.