Psychological skills training for athletes with disabilities

Hanrahan, Stephanie J. (2015) Psychological skills training for athletes with disabilities. Australian Psychologist, 50 2: 102-105. doi:10.1111/ap.12083

Author Hanrahan, Stephanie J.
Title Psychological skills training for athletes with disabilities
Journal name Australian Psychologist   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1742-9544
Publication date 2015-04-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/ap.12083
Open Access Status
Volume 50
Issue 2
Start page 102
End page 105
Total pages 4
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Publisher Taylor and Francis
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Abstract This article provides practical tips for psychologists working with athletes with disabilities. Minor modifications are potentially needed when teaching psychological skills to athletes with physical disabilities. For example, the tension phase of progressive muscular relaxation may be problematic for individuals with cerebral palsy, progressive muscular relaxation scripts may need to be modified to account for missing or inactive limbs, and the presence or absence of prostheses should be taken into account when doing body awareness or imagery exercises. Fewer adaptations than may be expected are required in terms of content of psychological skills training for athletes with sensory impairments (e.g., individuals who are blind are able to use imagery). Generally, few changes are needed in the content of psychological skills training programmes when working with athletes with physical, intellectual, or sensory disabilities. The main adaptations typically required when working within disabled sport relate to communication issues. Patience and creativity aid work with individuals with physical disabilities that affect their speech (e.g., cerebral palsy) and athletes with intellectual disabilities. Excellence in visual communication (e.g., Power Point, text messaging, video, white boards) is required when working with people with hearing impairments, and expertise in auditory communication (e.g., vivid and accurate descriptions, audio recordings) is needed when working with individuals with visual impairments.
Keyword Disability sport
Mental skills
Performance enhancement
Sport psychology
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
School of Psychology Publications
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