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Organisational stress and coping in professional rugby union athletes of New Zealand

Abstract
Professional rugby union athletes of New Zealand are currently being faced with complex pressures and demands that go beyond the stress they encounter on the field. While these competitive stressors have been an area that has been well researched in the past, organisational stressors that exist between the player and the organisation in which they operate in, have been neglected. This exploratory study was aimed at identifying organisational stressors experienced by professional rugby union athletes of New Zealand, and the subsequent coping methods that they employ to combat such stress. Eleven professional rugby union athletes from the Waikato rugby team of New Zealand participated in this study. The athletes completed this through a face to face interview. Thematic analysis identified a wide range of organisational issues, including environmental, personal, leadership and team issues with selection and injuries being the most commonly identified sources of stress. Furthermore, major coping strategies identified were problem focussed coping, emotion focussed coping and maladaptive coping, with problem focussed coping methods being the most popular of use. Understanding the unique organisational stressors and the subsequent coping strategies that the athletes of this study are employing to combat them fills a void on missing literature on the topic. A key implication is the awareness created for rugby union organisations. Findings challenge organisations to be aware of such issues players may be experiencing and encourage them to implement added support initiatives for those individuals. Directions for future research are discussed in the final chapter.
Type
Thesis
Type of thesis
Series
Citation
Starck, N. (2018). Organisational stress and coping in professional rugby union athletes of New Zealand (Thesis, Master of Applied Psychology (MAppPsy)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/12089
Date
2018
Publisher
The University of Waikato
Rights
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