Presentation Title

The Physical and Mental Implications of COVID-19 on College Athletes

Location

Online - Session 4C

Start Date

4-21-2021 2:50 PM

Major Field of Study

Global Public Health

Student Type

Undergraduate

Faculty Mentor(s)

Michaela George, Phd and Brett Bayles, Phd

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the CoronaVirus (COVID-19) outbreak to be a worldwide pandemic. The virus forced governments to legislate that people stay in their homes and social distance in an effort to minimize the spread of the virus. These laws forced many businesses to temporarily close, some even permanently. The restrictions closed gyms, stadiums, pools, fitness studios, parks, playgrounds, and many other facilities and public areas (“United Nations,” 2020). With these restrictions on human interaction, the physical and mental health of people throughout the world was, in many cases, seriously compromised. One particular group, collegiate athletes, saw their normal routines, including team engagement and interactions, practices, and competitive play, immediately come to a screeching halt. This study investigates the physical and mental impacts that COVID-19 has had on the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as well as the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) athletes across the nation. Twenty-six college athletes, from across the country and from various sports, were interviewed to collect data on how they felt they were impacted by COVID-19, and the resulting restrictions put on society and their team programs. Once the data was gathered, an analysis was completed to determine how COVID-19 affected their overall mental health. The results of the analysis showed a strong correlation between the restrictions placed on athletic activities and societal freedoms, and the negative mental health and physical impact on collegiate athletes.

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Apr 21st, 2:50 PM

The Physical and Mental Implications of COVID-19 on College Athletes

Online - Session 4C

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the CoronaVirus (COVID-19) outbreak to be a worldwide pandemic. The virus forced governments to legislate that people stay in their homes and social distance in an effort to minimize the spread of the virus. These laws forced many businesses to temporarily close, some even permanently. The restrictions closed gyms, stadiums, pools, fitness studios, parks, playgrounds, and many other facilities and public areas (“United Nations,” 2020). With these restrictions on human interaction, the physical and mental health of people throughout the world was, in many cases, seriously compromised. One particular group, collegiate athletes, saw their normal routines, including team engagement and interactions, practices, and competitive play, immediately come to a screeching halt. This study investigates the physical and mental impacts that COVID-19 has had on the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as well as the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) athletes across the nation. Twenty-six college athletes, from across the country and from various sports, were interviewed to collect data on how they felt they were impacted by COVID-19, and the resulting restrictions put on society and their team programs. Once the data was gathered, an analysis was completed to determine how COVID-19 affected their overall mental health. The results of the analysis showed a strong correlation between the restrictions placed on athletic activities and societal freedoms, and the negative mental health and physical impact on collegiate athletes.