The voice of the student.

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The voice of the student.

The Wave

The voice of the student.

The Wave

Meme of the Day 05/17/24
Meme of the Day 05/17/24
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Meme of the Day 05/16/24
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Meme of the Day 05/14/24
Meme of the Day 05/14/24
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If You Had To Pick A Crazy Color To Dye Your Hair, What Would It Be?
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Unveiling the Relationship Between Mental Health and Sports

Photo+credit+to+Sandro+Schuh+via+Unsplash+under+Unsplash+License.+%0AThe+mental+health+of+athletes+is+a+subject+commonly+overlooked.+%0A%0A
Photo credit to Sandro Schuh via Unsplash under Unsplash License. The mental health of athletes is a subject commonly overlooked.

Athletes confront a myriad of mental health challenges, ranging from anxiety and depression to eating disorders and substance abuse, largely stemming from the intense demands of their competitive environments. Enduring daily pressures, including the specter of injuries, demanding coaches, academic responsibilities, and more, can take a significant toll on their psychological well-being. Yet, mental health often remains overlooked or underestimated compared to physical health, despite its equal importance and the need for proactive measures.

Injuries are likely the primary stressor for athletes. Many athletes don’t want to admit they are hurt or that they need time off of their sport because they don’t want to lose their skill or fall behind. This puts a huge strain on them, pushing themselves too hard to not get hurt or continue playing when hurt. This usually results in an even worse injury due to continuing to practice on an injury. After taking a usually long recovery process, athletes are concerned about injuring themselves again while returning from the original injury. Many push themselves too hard in concern that they won’t live up to the same standard as they did before their injury.

Many athletes are also students. Research indicates that student-athletes are roughly 2 to 3 times more likely to develop symptoms of depression compared to non-athletes and about 45% of youth athletes quit sports because of burnout. Being an athlete while also a full-time student is extremely difficult and can have a huge impact on one’s mental health. Many students ignore their mental health due to being afraid they would be yelled at or benched. Lots of sports have students practicing up to 6 times a week and expecting a perfect performance every time. The pressure of having to be perfect in games/competitions otherwise you are letting everyone else down can become too much and sometimes you just need to take a step back and some time for yourself, but unfortunately, the mental part is much more overlooked than the physical part.

Sports are very good about getting you as much time off for injuries as you need. They want you to take as much time as you need to make sure you are at 100% wellness. Coaches especially will check on their athletes, make sure they are okay, and that they get the breaks they need without judging them for it. Mental health can impair the ability to work, study, participate on a team, and just maintain a healthy lifestyle. It is important that mental health issues are given the same attention as the physical injuries do. Students shouldn’t feel less or judged for taking a break due to their mental health.

Every day, mental health is brought to more people’s attention. There are many support networks and foundations, especially for athletes, and more understanding of the importance of mental health. It is important to know that mental health is equally as important as physical health and can have just as a detrimental effect if not given the right attention and treatment.

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