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Athlete Transitions Melanie Chowns Performance Lifestyle Advisor


In year 3 she starts on the Start programme and has no time for work to increase her income due to rowing ... age, health, race, experience 2: Perception of ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Athlete Transitions Melanie Chowns Performance Lifestyle Advisor

Athlete TransitionsMelanie
ChownsPerformance Lifestyle Advisor
Aims and Objectives
What is a transition?
A transition has been defined as an event which
results in a change in assumptions about oneself
and the world and requires a corresponding change
in behaviour and relationships.
(Nancy Schlossberg, 1981)
The Model of Human Adaptation to
TransitionSchlossberg 1981
Types of TransitionTransitions (Schlossberg,
Types of Transition
  • Athletic Context
  • Personal Development Context

Wylleman Lavellee, 2004
Athletic Level
Individual Level
Psycho-social Level
Academic Vocational Level
Key Rower transitions
Key Transitions
Normative Nonnormative
Key Transitions
Normative Nonnormative
Key School/ University Time TransitionsMost
common issues
Athletes who have failed to cope with transitions
in their careers
'I ate so little I'd feel faint during training'
How one of Britain's brightest Olympic hopes gave
up her sport to save herself from anorexia
London 2012 drove me to suicide attempt says
Olympic winner Tasha Danvers
Positive and Crisis transitions
  • Positive Transitions
  • Crisis transitions
  • Athlete makes a relatively quick and easy
    adjustment to the demands of a given transition
  • Usually occurs if the athlete has the necessary
    pre-requisites from an earlier transition e.g.
    theoretical and practical knowledge, skills and
  • High motivation, positive attitude and coping
    strategies and is in a positive psychological
  • Occur when the athlete has to make a special
    effort in order to successfully adapt
  • Inability to adjust creates symptoms of low self
    esteem, emotional discomfort, increased
    sensitivity to failure, disorientation in
    decision making and confusion

Factors Associated with the Transition Process
  • Negative Adjustment Factors
  • Positive Adjustment Factors
  • Unplanned
  • Forced out
  • Poor Performance
  • Strong Athletic Identity
  • Little Assistance
  • Lack of options
  • Lack of coping resources
  • Financial Difficulties
  • Planned
  • Voluntary
  • Achieved goals
  • Low Athletic Identity
  • Support network
  • Balance and options
  • Coping resources
  • Financial planning

Case StudiesGroup Discussion and how to help
athletes through transition
Real Life Transition Experiences with our Rowers
  • Case Study
  • Read the athletes real experience and discuss
  • What are the possible issues facing this athlete
    in this transition and the implications of those
  • What as coaches could you do to help the athlete
    through this transition?

Real Life Transition Experiences with our Rowers
  • Case Study 1 From club rower to GB U23 whilst
    at Uni
  • Athlete X is at the end of her first year at
    university and rowing for her boat club.
  • She has end of first year exams ahead.
  • She trains largely by herself with a programme
    set by her club coach
  • She goes to GB trials and finishes as one of the
    top U23s and is selected into the squad.

Real Life Transition Experiences with our Rowers
  • Case Study 2 From social rower working and at
    uni to rower on the Start Programme
  • Athlete Y rows socially for the first two years
    of university.
  • She works full time in the holidays to pay for
    being at uni.
  • In year 3 she starts on the Start programme and
    has no time for work to increase her income due
    to rowing commitments.
  • She has to catch up on uni work in the evenings
    and in the holidays.

Real Life Transition Experiences with our Rowers
Case Study 1
  • Issues
  • Possible Coach Support
  • Expectation to travel every weekend in last term
  • Impact on exams
  • Increase in training volume and new programme
  • Conflict with uni work huge time pressure
  • Less free time / uni life impact
  • Difficulty in integrating into squad
  • Assign Mentor
  • Build in flexibility into training programme
  • Negotiate flexibility with Tutors
  • Provide practical support in terms of transport,
    regular contact
  • Plan well and communicate efficiently. Minimal
    travel option?
  • Educate athlete around over training risks and
  • Trust athlete issue

Real Life Transition Experiences with our Rowers
Case Study 2
  • Issues
  • Possible Coach Support
  • No money, so stressful when she has to travel to
    camps / training and call coaches
  • Pressure on parents to provide additional
    finance, stretching them and stressing the
    athlete about asking them for help
  • Has to buy a single scull! How?
  • Course work suffers and goes from 1sts to 21s
  • Working 18 hours on training and study and rest /
    recovery suffers
  • Coaches to understand what grants are available
  • Coaches to use PL pack for sponsorship advice
  • Coaches to help find athlete good paid coaching
    jobs small time commitment, high pay
  • Practical support transport, coaches call
  • Good communication across all parties
  • Understand financial implications and plan ahead
    to athlete can plan finances better and get
  • Bring in impartial support

Potential support mechanisms and Coping Strategies
The Magic Questions!!
  • Whats the issue (clarify the goal)
  • What makes it an issue now?
  • How important is it on a scale of 110
  • How much energy do you have for a solution on a
    scale of 110
  • Tell me a bit about the difference in the scores?
    What would you want the energy score to be?
  • Who owns the issue/problem?
  • What are the implications of doing nothing or of
    letting things carry on as they are?
  • What have you already tried?
  • Whats your own contribution to the problem (or
    how are you getting in the way of this?)
  • In an ideal world what would be happening around
    this issue?
  • What is standing in the way of that ideal
  • Whats an example of when it went right and you
    were motivated to do it?
  • Imagine you at your most resourceful, what do you
    say to yourself about this issue?
  • What are the options for action here? (you might
    try brainstorming)
  • What criteria will you use to judge these
  • Which option seems the best one against those
  • So whats the next step / first step?
  • When will you take it on?
  • How could I help to ensure you do this?

What can you do as coaches to assist in
transition process
  • Encourage planning for transition and effective
    time management and provide information as early
    as possible to support good planning
  • Encourage open and frank communication between
    all parties assist them in combining sporting
    academic excellence and in developing career and
    life skills
  • Negotiate for and provide flexibility
  • Provide practical support
  • Link up athletes / mentor role
  • Athlete education in the training process to
    prevent injuries and over training quick
    recognition of this
  • Support and advise athletes as well as providing
    them with the opportunity for independent
    decision making
  • Use the Performance Lifestyle Manual to assist
    athletes in other transitions i.e. job search,
    financial planning, time management tools
  • Ask the What? questions when counselling /
    mentoring athletes to support athlete

  • Sports careers correspond to a sequence of
    transition phases each is a process not a
    single event
  • The transition phases occur within their
    athletic, psychological, social, academic and
    vocational development.
  • We must link the demands of each particular
    transition with the resources available to the
    athletes to support them to make each transition
  • Provide practical and psychological support to
    help them develop their life skills and coping
    strategies to deal with future transitions
  • In this way we can assist rowers at all
    development levels, stages or transitions to move
    successfully throughout their sporting career

Thank you
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