Student athletes have the difficult task of facing the typical challenges of a college student with the added pressure to excel in their sport. The commitment, dedication, persistence, training and high expectations demanded of student athletes can take a toll and result in a high level of stress. It's important that as an athlete continues to work their muscles in physical training, that they also consider their mind and mental health in order to be successful as a student, athlete and a person.
Common challenges that student athletes may experience:
- Struggles with identity
- Difficulties balancing sport/academics/personal life
- Difficulties related to injury
- Disordered eating/overexercising
- Symptoms of anxiety and/or depression
Resources for Student Athletes:
- Supporting Student-Athlete Mental Wellness: A webpage by the NCAA, this site offers interactive modules with information on mental wellness and resiliency.
- Burnout or Depression?: A blog by the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, this article focuses on the difference between burnout and depression.
- Balancing Sport and Education (pdf): Information on finding a balance between training and learning.
- UMass Lowell Career Services: An on-campus department which provides services to students to facilitate their career development.
- Time Management: Stay organized.
- Prioritize: Don't forget about the "STUDENT" in "student-athlete".
- Self-Care: Sleep, recharge, breathe.
- Positive Thinking: Talk to yourself the way you would speak to a friend.
- Stay Present: Constantly focusing on either the past or the future doesn't help you in the moment.
- Communicate: Others will know how to better support you if you let them know how you're feeling.