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Injuries and Their Impact on Athletes

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    Cristina lombardo cp english 3 ms hoppe student athletes. What do you think of when you read that my first initial thoughts are extremely talented strong builds and something i could never imagine myself doing. Theyre strong and talented is what really people think of them ignoring the human aspect where they too sometimes forget. These athletes are not superhuman even though we like to assume they are. They have feelings they have issues and pressures a normal student wouldnt be able to quite get. When we forget this as a whole and even as apart of the college/university environment it can have dire consequences. Since i probably wouldnt understand what its like to be an athlete and the pressures associated with being an athletes in any way or shape of form especially as a student i wanted to know what were those pressures and how could it affect their overall mental health.

    To expand my knowledge about this area i looked at how injuries substances the pressures of being physically fit and academics could contribute to this. Once i have looked at it i hope to offer possible solutions that could improve student athletes college/universities and the general public how we can accept these athletes as humans and allow them to be vulnerable foronce. an athlete is very physically involved with the sport they participate in. They must keep themselves in tip-top shape and have the constant worry of being the expected norm. if college athletes are so involved with maintaining their physical aspect one can only wonder how does the pressure of being physically fit contribute to the stressors of being an athlete being fit is one of the most important aspects of being an athlete as one has you to maintain the athletic fit that is acceptable and considered normal within the sport. Maintaining a healthy athletic build is one thing but when involved in sports there are multiple pressures that could cause dire consequences in these athletes.

    According to the paper to weigh or not to weigh relation to disordered eating attitudes andbehaviors amongst female collegiate athletes by kayla carrigan it has been identified that female athletes are a heightened risk population that are most likely to deal with eating disorders and pathogenic weight management practices. A possible reason that is stated is the increased risk of unique pressures that athletes deal with in their everyday environment wearing revealing clothing being weighed as apart of sport participation and disparaging comments about appearances from coaches is a key factor and has been classified in the development of eating disorders and body image concerns within athletes. The athletes who tend to participate in publicly displayed weigh-ins become acutely sensitized meaning that they are focusing more on their weight and physical appearance ending up more displeased with their body size and shape.

    Therefore reacting negatively with the way they view themselves and engage in multiple practices that will allow the hopes of the ability to lose weight so they can fit the ideals that exist within their sport. These tight restraints on weight then triggers very extreme reactions in order for these athletes to lose weight. According to multiple researchers on this similar topic research confirms that these other sport-specific pressures play a role in female athletes developing negative beliefs about their body size and shape and a desire to lose weight berry howe 2000; byrne mclean 2002; kerr et al. 2006; petrie et. al. 2009 and are related to disordered eating behaviors and pathogenic weight management including bulimic symptoms food and/or fluid restriction 22 unsupervised dieting fasting use of diet pills and vomiting kerr et al. 2006 these athletes resort to desperate measures because the pressure is so enormous that they feel the need to stay fit in any way possible. College is not an easy transition it is a drastic change to what you have become familiar with. a drastic change acts a stressor and has been shown that it influences the risk of weight gain and disrupt eating patterns incollege students.

    According to the paper association between athletic participation and the risk of eating disorder and body dissatisfaction in college students by laura blair is states that the general position in eating disorder research is that college athletes are more at risk for developing eating disorders. Blair states that athletes sometimes consider themselves as an exception to normal dieting because of the sport they are participating in. With eating disorders the female population are looked at more carefully but unlike their male counterparts as they are not as scrutinized about their bodies. Studies and reviews of literature that were done from researchers from harvard university telemark university college and norwegian school of sport sciences have shown that 50% of male athletes would like to change their body in some way as there has been an increase in male athletes who are preoccupied with body image. Blair along with her other co-writers had conducted a study that had compared self-reported eating behaviors. They had used a 26 questionnaire about eating attitudes and body shape. Their findings indicated that gender plays a greater role with body shape dissatisfaction and also indicating that athletic status are also included of having a great risk of disordered eating.

    It was lastly found that college freshman had the highest risk from sample size of 302 athletes both non-athletes athletes they state the fact that college classification yielded such high-risk levels for college freshman for body shape dissatisfaction and some risk for disordered eating should be addressed in future studies. The findings of college classification could also point to a deeper underlying behavior or affect like stress anxiety or depression as being more of a factor than gender or athletic status blair eating disorders can be caused by multiple things like stress anxiety and depression resulting as various factors when heightened. Athletes are seen as strong people who have the ability to do extraordinary things that is why they are looked at so closely.

    People are intrigued with the idea of being young and chasing a career still having that hope that one day they will get the opportunity to make it big. What isnt acknowledged is the amount of stress athletes face or the sacrifices they make when trying to be a professional player. Sacrifices regarding ones physical and mental health and how being incapable to play athletically has on a player. When players play theres always this risk of getting an injury and seriously damaging a certain body part but it can also affect output and the mentality of ones own worth. With that being said the question that will be looked at is how does having an injury contribute to ones mental state and how does that affect them overallt theres no question that athletes are strong they are capable of so many things athletically probably more than the averageperson who has just works out once a week. The difference is that these college athletes are playing for a possible career possible opportunities so disrupting that schedule is not an option especially when having an injury.

    Injuries for an athlete can be mentally draining where they want to get back as soon as possible and continue to play with their teammates. According to research from a brief report called athletes inclination to play through pain: a coping perspective is states that there has been studies from previous times that has shown the effect on how social networks influence athletes to accept that pain is part of the game brewer 2011 having this mentality as a player is quite damning because it grants the athlete this perception of playing when injured of it being okay. Tending to ignore all the negative side effects this can have on ones mind as well as physically making an injury worse. Sports are very rigorous and can cause pain in plenty of instances. Depending on the sport itself there will be this added on pressure to continue playing. Athletes do experience having pain differently how they will plan to cope with their pain is up to them. Though the level of how bad their injury is can contribute to them dealing with things like depression anxiety and stress.

    Every year there are about 12 500 injuries within college athletes who participate in ncaa sponsored sports hootman dick agel 2007 to look at the effects injury can have in an athlete there has to be this understanding that these athletes are under a lot of pressure to perform their absolute best and if something disrupts that it can be life altering. in the paper post concussion symptoms of depression and anxiety in division 1 college athletes it mostly focuses on concussions and the effects it has on the athletes who have experienced it. It talks about the psychological symptoms that could stem from a concussion from the damaged brain tissue as well as the psychological silque bloom horton mccrory johnston 2004 this idea that surrounds concussions of them being harmful is not to far off even though they do not have an effect from the outside the amount of damage inside the brain has a great impact. Concussions are defined as as a trauma-induced alteration of mental status occurring in sport activities game or practice regardless of whether the injury resulted in the restriction of the student-athletes participation harmon et al. 2013 they had conducted a study that included athletes from ten big ten conference university and looked at nine sports.

    They had used a generalized estimation equation regression to assess the effect of baseline psychological symptoms covassin 2015 the results had indicated that the athletes who did participate approximately three quarters of the 71 concussions came from males and most were present within football athletes. They state about two-thirds of concussed athletes 63.3% returned to play less than one week following the concussion covassin 2015 the majority of players that they had looked at continued playing right after a week of being diagnosed. this can infer that athletes are really not absorbing or using resources that would allow them to continue to get better. Instead they are focusing on getting back on a field ignoring the possible side effects of having a concussion. The study found that baseline depression and anxiety were pretty common post concussion it its not sure if it was from before the concussion but one can assume that other factors of being an athlete did have an active contribution to their overall health. They always do seem to havethis mindset regardless of the injuries to continue playing. Athletes have this level of competitiveness to them they want to be the greatest and be able to succeed and win.

    Being competitive can be healthy but when the competitive aspect goes too far athletes will result to unnatural sources to help them achieve that level of greatness or release stress that is caused by playing competitively. How likely are college athletes going to take substances to help them perform better and use it as an outsource to deal with their issuesathletes are an interesting group within colleges they deal with plenty of expectations and try to maintain those expectations but it is no surprise that in order to try to maintain these ideas they would want to relieve stress by drinking as well as using other forms to help them perform. Now drinking within colleges are quite common and more common within college athletes. According to the paper college athletes drinking motives and competitive seasonal status: additional examination of the athlete drinking scale it states that research has shown and has made it clear that those who participate in intercollegiate athletes are at more at risk for heavy drinking and the consequences related to it.

    They are more at risk meaning that they are more likely to drink more than their peers who are not athletes as well as that they might have more difficulty when recovering from drinking. Why an athlete drinks can result from various motives especially of being an athlete in college: anxiety stress and fitting the expected norm of an established group and the competitive aspect during the season. In the paper they had conducted a study that consisted of an athlete drinking scale ads that measured athlete specific drinking motives. The results from the scale provided additional support for the measures validity of looking at the specific drinking motives during the competitive season martens 2010 the results indicated that athletes specific drinking motives had changed during the competitive season being that the alcohol consumption has decreased but the drinking motives them self have increased. With drugs its more prevalent with the sport itself rather than personal motives.

    These athletes who will use drugs use them so they will be able to get a leg up as an athlete and be competitively on top. In these instances using drugs that have been banned from the ncaa is actually very common according to the article measuring drug andalcohol use among college athletes it states for example buckman et al. 2008 find that among male student-athletes 9.7 percent say they use banned performance enhancers and 55.8 percent say they used performance-enhancing drugs which might include legal nutritional supplements among female student-athletes no one said they use banned performance enhancers and 29.8 percent said they used performance enhancing drugs buckman 2008 athletes are always being looked at closely and have certain restriction regarding what they can and cant use when playing their sports. If these athletes were discovered using these substances there could be consequences that could limit the amount of playing time they get.

    These schools and the ncaa have strict policies on what they can and can not take as an athlete. In this study that they had conducted the athletes knew what was acceptable and not acceptable to take they state it suggests that 3.68 3.31 37 percent of respondents have knowingly taken banned drugs. Remarkably we also asked at the end of the survey: since you started playing sports in the ncaa have you ever knowingly taken a drug banned by the ncaa that may improve your athletic performance to this question only 4.9 percent said that they had druckman 2015 why someone would take these drugs is up to them but the most common idea is to improve their capability and even though this might contradict that with such a small number it still shows that drugs today are still very active within the athlete environment. As an athlete one has to work extremely hard when people think of athletes one assumes that they are devoted to getting drafted and focusing on their future careers.

    As a student though they have added on pressure to excel academically while still focusing on other factors of being a competitive athlete. Academics is the main premise of being a student as everyone wants to excel and expand their knowledge though sometimes academics can creep up on a student athlete. Contributing to their everyday stress but how does it contribute to the added on pressure academics are extremely important for any student when you have classes on top of an outside busy schedule it becomes harder to keep up with classes. It is well known that student athletes tend to struggle more in academics. In the article pluralistic ignorance among student athlete populations: a factor in academic underperformance it states that researchers suggested that the lack of performance in academics is because there is this lack of motivation within athletes when it comes to academic endeavors. They had found that most student athletes hold positive praise towards academic achievement but these athletes believe that their peers do not. These athletes want to learn but seemed to be dismissed by what others think because they are so focused on what their peers think and the influence their peers have conforming to fit in. According to the article it states there are several plausible explanations for student–athletes underperformance.

    In qualitative studies student–athletes report experiencing conflict between their student and athlete roles kamusoko and pemberton 2013; miller and kerr 2002; mckenna and dunstan-lewis 2004 college athletes are mixing being a student and an athlete together making it harder to focus on one specific thing. knowing not how to distinguish and separate the two is hard because they are expected to physically perform in shape even though people dont assume them to care that much about academics they actually do. According to the article why student athletes continue to fail by daniel oppenheimer he had found from a survey that his and his partners had took and asked athletes about how much they cared about sports and academics. When they had asked about athletics individually it got rated an 8.5 which is healthy from a scale 1-10 when asked about their academics it was higher than 9 average oppenheimer 2015 they had asked if they cared so much about academics why did they underperform one reason that has been common is that most dont think their teammates care about it as much oppenheimer 2015 athletes will try to fit in every way they can if their group doesnt like something or thinks certainly about something they might think that way just to fit the status quo. Overall athletes deal with a lot of pressures. Being an athlete isnt easy especially when you are expected to go above and beyond.

    These related pressures causes stress anxiety and depression though not individually all together they are the perfect reasons for student athletes declining mental health. They all are expected to do more than they are actually able to do which can deteriorate their mental health. we can try to solve this by teaching these athletes that it is okay to get help if needed and telling the universities/colleges to look for signs and not push their athletes over the edge. Meaning be receptive when they have feelings dont dismiss them allow them to talk freely without any judgement. Athletes are so heavily looked at people forget that they are humans rather than just a top prospect that deals with everyday stressors of being a young adult.

    Academics relationships etc though what was mainly focus on the physical aspect and academic aspect. they still feel pressured to fit in and continue playing since thats implanted within their minds ignoring the real effects that it can have on their mental health. colleges and universities need to stop putting pressure on these student athletes to be the best and allow them to be students before athletes. Students who deals with things like every other student would.

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    Injuries and Their Impact on Athletes. (2022, Mar 11). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/injuries-and-their-impact-on-athletes/

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