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J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Apr;26(4):1154-61. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31822e008b.

Perceived social support from strength and conditioning coaches among injured student athletes.

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Human Performance Laboratory, School of Physical Education, Sport, and Exercise Science, Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana, USA.


Injuries suffered by student athletes not only affect their physical ability to perform in sport but also have psychological effects as well. The purpose of this study was to examine student athletes' perceptions, expectations, and satisfaction of the social support provided by their strength and conditioning coach (SC) during the later reconditioning stage of their rehabilitation and their views on the overall level of importance of each type of social support. One hundred and sixty-five participants aged 20.21 ± 1.32 years from 6 Division I Universities in the Midwest region of the USA completed the modified Social Support Survey. The results of a chi-square test assessing the responses for 6 types of social support provided by SCs based on athletes' age, gender, and sport revealed a significant difference (χ2[13,105] = 26.46, p = 0.015) for listening support differing by sport. A significant difference (χ2[13,105] = 267.74, p = 0.010) was also revealed for reported emotional challenge by sport. Results showed that the SC had a significant psychosocial impact on student-athletes' overall psychological well-being during reconditioning. This study provides evidence of the vital psychosocial role that SCs can play during an injured student-athlete's reconditioning program.

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