1st Edition

Mental Health and Sport Supporting Elite Athletes

By Richard Elliott Copyright 2025
    216 Pages
    by Routledge

    216 Pages
    by Routledge

    The relationship between mental health and elite sport has found itself under more intense scrutiny in recent years.  This has occurred as a result of the increasing number of elite athletes who have chosen to talk about the mental health challenges that they have faced during their careers. It is also reflective of an emerging body of academic work that seeks to make sense of the interplay that exists between mental health and elite sport.  Mental Health and Sport: Supporting Elite Athletes is offered as a further contribution to that body of work; one that is designed to benefit practitioners who are already working with elite athletes, and those who aspire to do so.  It does so by providing a foundational understanding of mental health, by introducing some of the challenges that elite athletes can face during their careers, and by making some practical recommendations that can be used to help support the mental health of elite athletes.  Split into six substantive chapters that introduce key overarching issues relating to mental health and elite sport, and explore the implications for specific groups of athletes, Mental Health and Sport: Supporting Elite Athletes is an important reference for undergraduate students and postgraduate students studying on courses related to the overarching areas of sports science, sports management, sports coaching, sports psychology, and football studies, as well as emerging specialist postgraduate courses in the areas of player care and athlete health and well-being and also designed to support existing and aspiring player care professionals, as well as anybody who has an interest in the lived experiences of elite football players, the challenges that careers in the elite game can present, and the ways in which players might be supported.

    1. Introduction


    2. Mental health


    3. Environment


    4. Transitions


    5. Youth athletes


    6. Foreign athletes


    7. Female athletes


    8. Conclusion



    Richard Elliott is Head of Professional Education at UCFB’s Global Institute of Sport. Richard Elliott has spent more than twenty years researching the lived experiences of elite athletes and the environments in which they work.  An advocate for mental health literacy, he has developed a number of successful education programmes designed to support the mental and emotional wellbeing of elite athletes.