Publication details

A life of a former athlete after their elite career – a pilot study .



Year of publication 2017
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Studia Sportiva
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Sports Studies

Field Sport and leisure time activities
Keywords sport career; process of involution; theory of transition; semi-structured interviews; life crossroads; categories; life story
Description This paper reports on a pilot study of the Faculty of Sports Studies Masaryk University (FSpS) whose objective was to investigate psychosocial variables related to a managed, and/or unmanaged invo- lution at the end of the athlete’s sport career, and their transfer into an ordinary life after their elite sport’s engagement period. Consequently, this study aims to propose a theoretical frame providing typologies of approaches to the solutions dealing with their career’s ends, and the transition into their life after the career. The theory of transition, i.e., the theory of transitional stages in the development of an athlete’s motivational structure is a starting point for our research. An unmanaged or unmanageable involution brings about personal problems of a different charac- ter making up for the athlete’s loss of a social economic, psychosocial, and economic capital including loss of sport environment experience for the next generations The observed pilot group consists of sixteen former top athletes in team sports, nine males and seven females. The participants are former professionals, currently non-active players of football, ice-hockey, basketball, and volleyball in the Czech, and/or Czechoslovak top competitions. The semi- structured interviews were chosen to collect data in the previously designed thematic areas such as the development and a course of their sport career, their family background, life or sport crossroads, their lifestyle, needs, goals, and their problem-solving ability in relation to their sport career and involution. The interviews were conducted by lecturers of the FSpS. Data analysis was performed using categorical data sorting followed on by an observation of categorical clusters, and the development and trajectory of an individual athlete’s life story.
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