Posted 06/04/2021 in Category 1 by DAVID CHARLTON

065 Encouraging Mentally Healthy Cultures in Sport

Today's podcast episode looks at how elite sporting environments can impact on an athlete’s mental health and psychological wellbeing.  My guest, Clinical Psychologist, Amy Izycky has recently released a book called Skewed to the Right Sport Mental Health and Vulnerability which we go on to discuss.  

The episode helps you understand the intricacies of different sports such as rowing and combat sports where we go on to discuss the complexities of weight restrictions in these sports.  We also chat about high performance sport in general and how it can promote obsessive behaviours and perfectionism.  Macho behaviour and cultures which are associated with “Toughness” and incorrectly Mental Toughness is also often encouraged in sport and we look at the potential impact on an individual’s mental health.


Key Learning Points:

  • Rowing prides itself on being one of the most challenging sports where only the toughest can do it well because of the levels of commitment and the need to push through mental barriers.
  • Certain personality traits such as focus, discipline and aggression, are celebrated in sport and they're put on a pedestal, though they can have a negative impact on an athlete’s mental health.
  • Anger or aggression are great qualities in sport when you strive for specific goals however some individuals can struggle to control this away from their sports, putting the individual and people around them at risk.
  • Clinical psychologists are interested in supporting athletes who operate at the extreme end of needing “control” or the extreme versions of ”toughness”.
  • My role as a Sports Psychologist is concerned with optimising performance, proactively maintaining and enhancing psychological wellbeing.  I’m also able to identify if there are any mental health concerns which link to anxiety, depression, eating disorders and addiction.  At that point I’d signpost onto mental health specialists such as clinical and counselling psychologists.


Connect with Amy Izycky

Instagram

LinkedIn

Website 

BOOK: Skewed to the Right, Sport, Mental Health and Vulnerability 


Connect with David Charlton

Accelerator Course: Achieving Your Goals Faster

Download THE FOCUSED ATHLETE CHECKLIST

Join David @ The Sports Psychology Hub

Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn


To Listen to the Full Podcast Episodes

Podcast Ep011: Dave Algeo - Mental Toughness, Mental Health and High Performance

Podcast Ep018: Kieron Brady - From Professional Football to Alcoholism Consultant

Podcast Ep031 David Jueno - How to Turn Your Life Around and Inspire Others


Other Useful Resources linked to Mental Health

Blog - Make Better Decisions to Help Your Sport Performance

Blog - 5 Ways to Create a Psychological Safe Sporting Environment

Blog – 3 Tips to Deal with Bullying in Sport

Podcast – The Importance of Effective Communication in Sports

Podcast  - How to Build Interpersonal Confidence

Podcast – How to Assert Yourself 

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