A Scientist-Practitioner’s Workshop on Psychological Resilience: Theoretical Background and Targeted Applied Techniques

Stephen Gonzalez, University of Utah, USA
Nick Galli, University of Utah, USA
Nicole Detling, University of Utah, USA

Theme: Anxiety, stress, and emotions

Program ID: WKSP-08

Presentation: October 2, 2013 2:15 pm - 3:15 pm

Room: Magnolia


Peak performance is often associated with some form of mental strength, such as mental toughness (Jones et al., 2002), hardiness (Kobasha, 1979), or grit (Duckworth, Peterson, Mathews, & Kelly, 2007).). An additional, yet distinct construct related to mental strength is psychological resilience, or the ability for an individual to positively adapt to adversity (Luthar, Cicchetti, & Brown, 2000)). Interest in resilience has begun to emerge among sport psychology professionals focused on performance (Fletcher & Sarkar, 2012) and personal development in athletes (Galli & Vealey, 2008; Hossieni & Besharat, 2010). The purpose of this workshop is to: 1) educate professionals on conceptual issues in resilience, and 2) suggest ways in which mental skills training can enhance psychological resilience in athletes at all levels of sport. The scientist component of the workshop will provide attendees with a theoretical framework of resilience synthesized from past research, and two current models of resilience in sport (Galli & Vealey, 2008; Fletcher & Sarkar, 2012). The theoretical framework of resilience presented in the workshop is a synthesis of past research regarding the development and process of resilience. The framework consists of four stages: 1) presence of protective factors, 2) maturation of resilient characteristics, 3) presence of adversity, and 4) positive adaptation. The practitioner component of the workshop will review applied resilience building techniques, and apply traditional mental skills training to resilience theory by offering attendees a broad spectrum of case studies. Workshop case studies will address diverse characteristics such as gender, age, ethnicity and race, acute and chronic adversities, and multiple levels of sport, in a supervised and collaborative setting. The ultimate learning outcome of this workshop is to enhance attendees’ understanding of psychological resilience and to better position them to promote resilience in their clients. Attendees will receive handouts with workshop notes and proceedings.

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