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Stress on College Student-Athletes

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By JeffBennett24
Words 1088
Pages 5
Stress amongst College Athletes & Non-Athletes
Jeff Bennett
University of Mount Union

Athletic participation and academic stress has been a challenging topic and one that has made many question about. With all the extracurricular activities that students have, they don’t realize that their stress could be affecting them more than they may know. This study examines the stress level results amongst 10 college student athletes and 10 non-athletes. The results present a rare finding regarding stress amongst the students. Stress has become an on-going issue that has affected the college satisfaction of a student. Many people don’t realize that they have stress and it’s affecting them in some sort of way or some may know they have stress but don’t want to take any type of action towards getting help. Possible explanations for the findings and implications for stress amongst athletes and non-athletes of the University of Mount Union are provided.

Introduction Stress has been a rising issue concerning not only college students but also college athletes. With all the extracurricular activities the students take on in college along with the academic part of it have led to very high stress level. Controlling time and having an organized schedule is the main fix to this problem. Whether you’re a college athlete or just a normal college student, everyone has stress or has experienced stress. The purpose of this study was to figure out whether or not there is a significant difference in stress levels amongst college athletes and non-athletes. There has been past research conducted on whether or not college athletes need to seek counseling services but there isn’t much research on why or why not athletes are stressed more than non-athletes. This study will help find a conclusion to that question. College athletes are hardly recognized as “student athletes” to people, but in reality, academics is usually the top priority to many. Having academics as a top priority, athletes find themselves having a hard time balancing academics with their respective sport. With that being said, college athletes stress levels will be a lot higher than those who aren’t involved in a sport. Also, the athlete’s college satisfaction level will be lower. Normally when the athlete has practice it is after school around three or four o’clock, how are the athletes supposed to have a social life if they go to school, then to practice, then to the library to study? The social life isn’t the biggest concern, the stress is. The student athlete is required to balance everything that is going on, which leads to high stress levels and low college satisfaction. The hypothesis is being tested by conducting a survey amongst college athletes and non-athletes.

In this study 20 people participated in the survey. 10 were college athletes and 10 were non-athletes. The recruiting was a set at random which means that the participants were male and female. All of participants were all surveyed in the University of Mount Union’s Shields Hall which is a campus dorm. The dorm has a mixture of college athletes and non-athletes along with a mix of males and females.
In this study the independent variable is the amount of things that are leading the college athlete or non-athlete to have stress or no stress. The dependent variable would be their stress level (1 to 5) based on their surroundings.
The materials used in the study were a half slip of paper that had the reasoning of the study and the instructions on how to complete the survey. The slip of paper had athlete and non-athlete, then one through five, with one being no stress and five being highly stressed.
The study was conducted by approaching an individual or a group of people in the dormitory by knocking on their doors. If they answered, I then explained what the project was for and why it would be helpful to them. Before they could jot down their stress levels they had to sign the informed consent form. The participant had to circle “athlete” or “non-athlete” and then could record their stress level. Once the participant(s) were done completing the survey, then they were handed a debriefing statement.
The data from the survey was collected and analyzed from both the athletes and the non-athletes. With the dependent variable being the stress level amongst the participants, it is easy to say that both groups had high stress levels. There were five students in the non-athlete group that had high stress, three that had medium stress, and two that had no stress. For the athlete group six had high stress, two had medium stress, and two had no stress. After doing the Chi Square test, the results were as follows: χ² (df=2, n=20) =0.291, p > 0.05. It is safe to say that the results were not significant because the Pearson Chi-Square value of 0.291 is greater than the critical value of 0.05. As the data concludes, there is no sign of athletes having more stress than non-athletes. They came out to be very similar in stress levels.
The results of this study appear to have no support to the hypothesis, which was college student athletes have more stress than those who aren’t involved in a sport. Looking back at the data, the two groups were really similar in stress values. Most of the participants seem to have a lot of stress; very few had medium or no stress. Since both groups had high stress values rather than one, the hypothesis couldn’t be supported. Through this study, it is safe to say that there was some validity to it. There are ways that this study could be changed up and reevaluated. One being, not distribute the survey the second week before exam week, when everyone is stressed. Another way would be distributing the surveys to athletes that are currently playing their sport. With exam week approaching them, most of the participants were stressed with all the school work they had not only for athletes but for the non-athletes also. Obviously the athletes would be stressed, but the non-athletes also have to deal with all the school work and tests, so it all pans out in the end. The results of this study may help researchers want to figure out whether or not college student athletes have more stress than non-athletes.

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