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A systematic review of interventions to increase awareness of mental health and well-being in athletes, coaches and officials

Breslin, Gavin, Shannon, Stephen, Haughey, Tandy, Donnolly, Paul and Leavey, Gerard (2017) A systematic review of interventions to increase awareness of mental health and well-being in athletes, coaches and officials. Systematic Reviews, 6 (177). pp. 1-15. [Journal article]

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DOI: 10.1186/s13643-017-0568-6


Background: To conduct a systematic review determining the effect of sport-specific mental health awareness programs to improve mental health knowledge and help-seeking among sports coaches, athletes and officials. To review study quality and report on the validity of measures that were used to determine the effectiveness of programs. Methods: Sport-specific mental health awareness programs adopting an experimental or quasi-experimental design were included for synthesis. Six electronic databases were searched: Psychinfo, Medline (OVID interface), Scopus, Cochrane, Cinahl and Sport Discus. Each database was searched from its year of inception to October 2016. Risk of bias was assessed using the Cochrane and QATSQ tools. Results Ten studies were included from the 1216 studies retrieved: four comprising coaches or service providers, one with officials, four with athletes, and one involved a combination of coaches and athletes. A range of outcomes were used to assess indices of mental health awareness and well-being. Mental health referral-efficacy was improved in six studies, while three reported an increase in knowledge about mental health disorders. However, seven studies did not report effect sizes for their outcomes, limiting clinically meaningful interpretations. Furthermore, there was substantial heterogeneity and limited validity in the outcome measures of mental health knowledge and referral efficacy. Seven studies demonstrated a high risk of bias. Conclusions: Further well-designed controlled intervention studies are required. Researchers, practitioners and policy makers should adhere to available methodological guidance and apply psychological theory of behaviour change when developing and evaluating complex interventions.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords:mental health literacy; sport; resilience; athletes; interventions; health pro
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Life and Health Sciences > School of Sport
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
Research Institutes and Groups:Psychology Research Institute > Population Health Sciences and Mental Health Services
Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute
Psychology Research Institute
Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Institute > Centre for Sports Science and Sports Medicine
ID Code:38500
Deposited By: Mrs Julie Haydock
Deposited On:05 Sep 2017 08:13
Last Modified:13 Mar 2018 11:15

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