Coping strategies used by national champion figure skaters

Res Q Exerc Sport. 1993 Dec;64(4):453-68. doi: 10.1080/02701367.1993.10607599.


This investigation had two purposes: (a) to identify and describe the coping strategies used by national champion figure skaters and (b) to examine the relationship between coping strategies and particular stress sources. Participants were 17 of 20 (85%) Senior U.S. National Champion figure skaters who won titles between 1985 and 1990. All skaters were interviewed, and the interview transcripts were content analyzed. General coping dimensions reported by at least 40% of the skaters included (a) rational thinking and self-talk, (b) positive focus and orientation, (c) social support (e.g., receiving support from coach, talking with friends and family), (d) time management and prioritization, (e) precompetitive mental preparation and anxiety management (e.g., relaxation, visualization), (f) training hard and smart, (g) isolation and deflection (e.g., not letting things get to me, avoiding/screening media), and (h) ignoring the stressor(s). It was also found that the skaters implemented different coping strategies depending on the specific stressors encountered.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anxiety / prevention & control
  • Attitude
  • Cognition
  • Communication
  • Female
  • Goals
  • Health Behavior
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Male
  • Physical Education and Training
  • Self Concept
  • Skating / psychology*
  • Social Support
  • Stress, Physiological / prevention & control*
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control*
  • Time Factors