Psychological safety in high-performance sport
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SubjectAthletes; Coach-Athlete Relationship; Maltreatment; Psychological Abuse; Psychological Safety; Sport
The purpose of this action-oriented research was to evaluate the current state of psychological safety within Rugby Canada’s Women’s 7s team and provide actionable recommendations to create change. The inquiry question was: How might Rugby Canada foster a more psychologically safe sport environment? A survey and a focus group were the methods used to delve into the inquiry question, which adhered to the Royal Roads University Research Ethics Policy. The findings revealed the presence of a hierarchical environment, maltreatment, grooming, fear of failure, and the athletes’ need for a safer environment. Further, the results supported the recommendations in service of Rugby Canada’s need to prioritize the psychological safety of their athletes through the implementation of new member onboarding, clear selection guidelines, support for the coach-athlete partnership, and providing athletes with a safe platform to share feedback.
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