Athlete welfare should be of central importance in all sport. This comprehensive volume features cutting-edge research from around the world on issues that can compromise the welfare of athletes at all levels of sport and on the approaches taken by sports organisations to prevent and manage these.

In recent years, sports organisations have increased their efforts to ensure athlete health, safety, and well-being, often prompted by high-profile disclosures of sexual, physical, and emotional abuse; bullying; discrimination; disordered eating; addiction; and mental health issues. In this book, contributors lift the lid on these and other issues that jeopardise the physical, emotional, psychological, social, and spiritual welfare of athletes of all ages to raise awareness of the broad range of challenges athletes face. Chapters also highlight approaches to athlete welfare and initiatives taken by national and international sport organisations to provide a safer, more ethical sports environment.

As the first book to focus exclusively on athlete welfare, this is an essential read for students and researchers in sports studies, coaching, psychology, performance, development and management, and physical education. It is also a useful reference point for anyone working in welfare, safeguarding, child protection, and equity and inclusion in and beyond sport.

chapter |11 pages


ByMelanie Lang

part Part I|41 pages

Conceptualisations of athlete welfare

chapter 1|9 pages

Developments in international policy on athlete welfare

ByMelanie Lang

chapter 2|9 pages

Scientism and the welfare of athletes

Minds, brains, genes and agency
ByLeon Culbertson

chapter 3|10 pages

Organisational obligations toward athlete transitions

Confronting the bureaucratisation of athlete welfare with an ethics of care
ByG. Z. Kohe, L. G. Purdy

chapter 4|11 pages

Athlete shaming and the ethics of care

Opposing forces in sport coaching
ByEmily McCullogh, Parissa Safai

part Part II|83 pages

Current concerns in the welfare of athletes

chapter 5|12 pages

Gendered violence in women’s artistic gymnastics

A sociological analysis
ByNatalie Barker-Ruchti, Astrid Schubring, Carly Stewart

chapter 7|13 pages

Presenteeism in elite sport organisations

A framework for understanding athletes’ decisions to practise sport despite health concerns
ByJochen Mayer, Felix Kühnle, Ansgar Thiel

chapter 9|14 pages

Welfare and the protection of young athletes

An analysis of the nature and prevalence of bullying behaviours in sport settings
ByMiguel Nery, Carlos Neto, António Rosado, Peter K. Smith

chapter 10|9 pages

Degrading and harming new teammates during hazing

‘Athletes will be athletes’
ByJennifer J. Waldron

chapter 11|10 pages

Exploring the links between self-directed violence and child maltreatment and bullying in sport

BySylvie Parent, Judith Kotiuga, Tine Vertommen, Kristine Fortier

part Part III|41 pages

Athlete mental health

chapter 12|12 pages

Mental health in sport

ByBrad Donohue, Davy Phrathep

chapter 13|10 pages

Suicide among athletes

ByAshwin L. Rao

chapter 14|10 pages

The athlete and addiction

ByCarwyn Jones

chapter 15|7 pages

Eating disorders and disordered eating in sport

The hidden role of sporting organisations and how the cycle can be broken
ByJenny McMahon

part Part IV|38 pages

Equity and inclusion as an athlete welfare concern

chapter 16|13 pages

The welfare of disabled people in sport

ByHayley Fitzgerald

chapter 17|10 pages

Racial and ethnic diversity and racist ruptures in US youth soccer

ByAlex Manning

chapter 18|13 pages

Locked out

Examining binary-gendered locker rooms as a key site for trans athlete welfare
ByAli Greey

part Part V|81 pages

New agendas and missing voices

chapter 19|10 pages

Virtual technologies as tools of maltreatment

Safeguarding in digital spaces
ByEmma Kavanagh, Chelsea Litchfield, Jaquelyn Osborne

chapter 20|11 pages

The welfare of adolescent high-performance action sport athletes

The case of young commercially sponsored Dutch kite surfers
ByFroukje Smits

chapter 21|9 pages

Examinations of sports workers’ welfare in spaces of geopolitical conflict

‘The country is under threat, but the game goes on’
ByL. G. Purdy, G. Z. Kohe, R. Paulauskas

chapter 22|12 pages

Pasifika rugby migration and athlete welfare

Stairway to heaven
ByDavid Lakisa, Jack Sugden, Brent McDonald

chapter 23|14 pages

Countering the trajectories towards new forms of violence in youth

Enhancing protective factors through sports
ByDean M. Ravizza

chapter 24|12 pages

Sexual abuse ‘survivor’ research in sport

ByColin Harris, Mike Hartill

chapter 25|11 pages

Factors influencing the mental health of sports match officials

The potential impact of abuse and a destabilised support system from a global context
ByTom Webb, Paul Gorczynski

part Part VI|47 pages

Stakeholders in athlete welfare

chapter 26|11 pages

The role of parents in promoting the welfare of children involved in sport

ByCamilla J. Knight, Olivier Y. Rouquette, Maita G. Furusa

chapter 27|10 pages

Consent and complicity

The athletes’ role in the normalisation of damaging coaching practices
ByChris Zehntner

chapter 28|12 pages

Athlete welfare in coach–athlete romantic relationships

BySusanne Johansson

chapter 29|12 pages

Moving beyond unproblematic policy implementation

Some micro-level reflections on social interaction, emotion, and the enactment of safeguarding policy in sport
ByAndrea Scott-Bell, Karl Wharton, Paul Potrac

part Part VII|59 pages

Approaches to prevention

chapter 30|14 pages

Protection of the athlete

Activities of the International Olympic Committee
ByMargo Mountjoy, Kirsty Burrows, Susan Greinig

chapter 31|11 pages

Criminal record checks as a tool to prevent child abuse in sport

ByMelanie Lang, Maria Papaefstathiou

chapter 32|9 pages

Protecting athletes against sexual violence

A club-based approach from Germany
ByBettina Rulofs

chapter 33|11 pages

Measuring the prevalence of interpersonal violence against children in sport

ByTine Vertommen, Sylvie Parent

chapter 34|12 pages

Advancing autonomy-supportive coaching through the application of the transtheoretical model

ByJoseph Gurgis, Gretchen Kerr, Ashley Stirling