Impact of Athletic Identity, Emotional Competence, and Self Stigma on Athletes’ Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help


The purpose of this study was to examine the impact athletic identity, emotional competence, and self-stigma have on collegiate athletes’ attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help. Nearly half a million student-athletes compete in the National College Athletic Association (NCAA, 2018). Due to collegiate standards, these participants must exceed field expectations while earning high grades. Hence, these mandates elevate stress and other debilitating issues. Several variables, such as emotional competence, athletic identity, and self-stigma, attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help, could delay recovery. A minor issue doubles and negatively influences the student-athletes seeking assistance (Sudano & Miles, 2016). Exactly,93 NCAA Division I soccer players completed multiple questionnaires online. The statistical analysis indicated emotional competence, athletic identity, and self-stigma did not significantly predictor athletes’ attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help. However, gender and athletes’ attitudes statistically and significantly affected attitudes toward seeking psychological help. An independent t-test revealed female soccer athletes had significantly more positive views toward seeking psychological help than male counterparts. This research provides greater understanding of this unique population and encourages mental wellness.


Michel N. Bouchahine
Student, PhD, San Diego University for Integrative Studies, California, United States


Presentation Type

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


Sport Betting and eSport


Athletic Identity, Emotional Competence, Self-Stigma, Athletes’ Attitudes, Psychological Help

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