Stress and Injury Essay

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Lazarus and Folkman (1984)
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The theory explains the athlete’s perception of the situation in relation to their coping. The way they cope with stress is critical to their behaviour and performance in the sport, potentially making them prone to injury. This is caused by the perceived imbalance between demands and their ability.
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Holmes and Rahe (1967)
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Major life events are the most dominant stressor for an athlete. Stressors can be anything from failure, to relationship problems. Disrupts homeostasis, causes a fight or flight response. This will cause even higher cortisol levels and a lack of concentration, decreasing performance and the ability of motor skills.
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Wiese-Bjornstal (1998)
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Integrated model of physiological response to sport injury and rehabilitation process. Describes injury responses and takes into account cognitive appraisal, behavioural, situational, emotional and personal responses that could play a part in an athlete’s response to an injury.
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What is the relationship between stress and injury?
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Stress can affect injury because stressors have the ability to impair the concentration of an athlete in a game, making them more prone to injury. However, injuries can be a stressor as well.
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Anshel (1991)
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A survey to investigate the causes of using drugs in sport. Primary reasons for taking drugs is to cope with stressors and to increase overall performance. Qualitative data. There was no way of knowing if the athlete themselves had taken drugs. Did not take into account amateurs/professionals.
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Wadler and Hainline (1989)
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There are many reasons as to why an athlete might take drugs in their sport, however it was found that athletes are more likely to take drugs than non-athletes, perhaps because they have more stressors and are in more competitive situations.
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Game Theory
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Originally, this theory describes the prisoner’s dilemma, but can be applied to drug use and sport psychology. Suggests the possible outcomes and punishments if you either tell the truth about using drugs, or stay silent. Apply to the blood doping in tour de France. When the payoffs for success are higher, motivation to take the drugs increases, ‘doping dilemma’.
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Olrich (1999)
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Studied athlete’s own perception of using drugs in sport. Cognitive dissonance: weighing out the good and the bad, but favouring the positive side. The short-term advantages vs. long-term disadvantages of taking drugs. Many reasons for why athletes take drugs, but they keep taking drugs due to addiction, and positive outcomes.
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Case Study of Heidi Krieger
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Heidi was given anabolic steroids without her knowledge (she was a shot put athlete). She ended up with masculine features, which she assumed was a result of the sport. She then got depression and got a sex change when she found out about the drugs.

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