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Learning from sport burnout and overtraining
Learning from sport burnout and overtraining

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7 Summary of Session 5

The main learning points from this session are:

  • Self-determination theory (SDT), with its emphasis on the perceived satisfaction of the three human needs of autonomy, relatedness and competence, is often used in exploring a motivational perspective of burnout.
  • The motivational climate that coaches create influences motivation. In particular, an ego-involving climate increases the risk of burnout and a task-involving climate reduces it.
  • Perfectionism is consistently associated with burnout. The two main dimensions of perfectionism are:
    • ‘striving’ – the use of high personal goals, and
    • ‘concerns over mistakes’ – this is strongly associated with burnout.
  • Researchers (e.g. Hall et al., 2014) have identified six interlinked thoughts and behaviours which help explain perfectionism.
  • The Pendleton (cyclist) case illustrated the application of the three SDT needs, the importance of exploring athlete goals and how perfectionism strongly influences thoughts and behaviours.
  • The Kitto (rugby) case illustrated the distress caused by perfectionistic high standards and negative evaluation. In addition, you saw how reframing the way Kitto judged his performances and broadened his identity benefited his well-being.

In the next session you will investigate how coach burnout experiences may be different to those experienced by athletes. In the process you will discover what it is that may make coaches’ day-to-day work with people so draining, and how coaches close to burnout sometimes use an unusual defence mechanism to protect themselves.

You can now go to Session 6 [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .