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International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) | Volume VI, Issue VIII, August 2022 | ISSN 2454–6186

Facilitating Psychological Recovery of Student-Athletes at Post-Injury

Desiree A. Espina
De La Salle University, Philippines

IJRISS Call for paper

Abstract- This paper intends to propose a counseling program for collegiate student-athletes who need psychological intervention following their sport injuries. The proposed program consists of three phases: Assessment Phase, Intervention Phase, and Termination and Maintaining Changes Phase. It is anchored to two important evidence-based frameworks – the Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Framework and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Using CBT techniques, the program will attempt to regulate an injured athlete’s negative emotions such as anxiety and fear to develop positive and helpful cognitions, to help the client establish clear and defined post-injury goals and to impact some behavioral improvements in the injured athlete’s adherence to recovery goals. Consequently, it will also target to facilitate the development of two of the five core competencies being promoted by the SEL Framework namely self-awareness and self-management.

Keywords: Student-Athletes, Counseling program, Sport Injury, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Framework


Sport Psychology has commonly described sport injury as one of the most significant obstacles to a successful athletic career because it can deprive athletes of the chance to master their athletic skills and the many opportunities that go with it (Williams, 2010). Athletes become prone to manifesting negative emotional reactions and self-defeating thoughts as they adjust to the changes that accompany their injury (Hale, 2008). This condition holds true to our student-athletes in the university who unfortunately experienced being injured while performing their sports. Very much noticeable among this group are the emotional and mental difficulties in coping with the changes and adjustments that accompany their injury. The amount of time, energy, and commitment they have devoted to their sport, is all of a sudden, without a warning, taken away from them. Their sport is so important to these active young people, it is like losing a significant part of themselves when an injury happens. Being restricted to do their usual activities and being isolated from their teammates as they go through rehabilitation sessions while the rest of the team trains make the process of recovery even more anxiety-provoking for them. The physical hurt that they feel is only one very small part of all the pain that they have to go through in the rehabilitation process. The mental pain caused by their injury can be far more devastating than the strained or torn ligaments, ripped cartilage or broken bones. More than the physical discomfort, the mental and emotional consequences of their injury is something that they can’t easily handle thus affecting