Psychological stress in high level sailors during competition
AbstractThe purpose of this work was to investigate the psychological stress present in elite sailors in a competition. Based on a descriptive field research, 31 elite sailors volunteered to participate. They answered the Perceived Stress Scale (Cohen & Williamson, 1988) and also specific questions on self-control, sources and strategies of coping. Data were analyzed by using descriptive and inferential (Student t test and Pearson's correlation) statistics. These athletes revealed low and moderate scores (M = 20.00, DP = 6.83) of stress originated from both intrinsic (ship troubles, team disorders) and extrinsic (study, working and training, family and financial problems) sources. The group reported good stress control during competition through the use of cognitive (avoidance) and somatic (listening music, resting/sleeping, talk to friends) strategies. It is important that sailors are able to control and cope with high levels of psychological stress and to understand how to proceed when under unstable and unexpected situations that arise during competition.
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