Article

A systematic review of stress management interventions with sport performers

Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology 01/2012; DOI: 10.1037/a0026628

ABSTRACT The purpose of this review was to systematically identify and evaluate the psychosocial interventions used to manage a component of the stress process in competitive sport performers. Inclusion criteria were devised to select research relevant to the topic area. Studies were assessed for inclusion by examining their title, abstract, and then full text. Based on the outcome of this process, 64 studies were included in the review. These studies encompassed a variety of cognitive (n = 11), multimodal (n = 44), and alternative interventions (n = 9). The results indicate that, in general, a variety of stress management interventions are associated with athletes’ optimized stress experience and enhanced performance. The findings suggest that the effectiveness of stress management is moderated by a number of diverse design features (e.g., treatment adopted, stress component outcome measured). These design features are important to consider when designing interventions for athletes of varying sports, ages, and competitive standards.

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