The personal meanings and experiences of resilience amongst elite badminton athletes in the build up to competition

Adam, Rebecca and Cogan, Nicola (2019) The personal meanings and experiences of resilience amongst elite badminton athletes in the build up to competition. Journal of Qualitative Research in Sports Studies, 13 (1). pp. 61-84. ISSN 1754-2375

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    Abstract

    The concept of resilience has a wide theoretical framework with a growing body of research addressing resilience in sport. With competitive athletes experiencing multiple stressors and adversities throughout their sporting careers, it is important to further understand resilience within a sporting context. The aim of this study was to explore elite athletes’ personal meanings and experiences of resilience in the build up to competition in the sport of badminton. Six professional badminton players were interviewed and interpretive phenomenological analysis was adopted to analyse the qualitative data. Four themes emerged: (1) An optimistic appraisal of pressure as integral to resilience; (2) Shift from negative emotional state to acceptance; (3) Striking a balance between life and sport; and (4) A quality relationship between coach and athlete facilitating optimal performance. The findings have implications for sport professionals who work closely with elite athletes aiming to foster resilience and improve performance.