Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners

Emma Davies, Richard Collins, Julia Ennis

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

Abstract

Objectives: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the emotional and psychological responses of elite riders to the injury of their equine partners. Design: A phenomenological design was implemented to identify common perceived meanings of a shared experience (equine injury).

Methods: Five riders competing internationally in dressage, show jumping and eventing were interviewed about their experiences when their equine partner suffered a serious, or career-ending injury. Interview questions explored the athletes’ careers, their initial reaction to the injury, coping mechanisms and the return to elite competition.

Results: Thematic analysis revealed that depression, denial and guilt were common emotional responses, similarly experience by athletes in response to their own injuries. Injury to their horse led riders to question their identity as elite athletes, and question their careers within equestrian sport.

Conclusions: Riders perceive the horse as part of the ‘athlete’ package thus are at twice the risk of injury-related psychological stress when compared to other athletes. Coping resources for riders are needed within equestrian sport to minimise the psychological impact of injury, particularly at elite level. Goal setting and social support systems are beneficial for coping with injury in other athletic environments and should be implemented within specific sports science support for elite riders.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015
EventDivision of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016 - Queen's Hotel, Leeds, United Kingdom
Duration: 14 Dec 201515 Dec 2015

Conference

ConferenceDivision of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016
Abbreviated titleDESP2016
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityLeeds
Period14/12/1515/12/15

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Horses
Psychology
Wounds and Injuries
Athletes
Sports
Guilt
Psychological Stress
Social Support
Interviews
Depression

Cite this

Davies, E., Collins, R., & Ennis, J. (2015). Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners. Poster session presented at Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, Leeds, United Kingdom.
Davies, Emma ; Collins, Richard ; Ennis, Julia. / Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners. Poster session presented at Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, Leeds, United Kingdom.
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abstract = "Objectives: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the emotional and psychological responses of elite riders to the injury of their equine partners. Design: A phenomenological design was implemented to identify common perceived meanings of a shared experience (equine injury). Methods: Five riders competing internationally in dressage, show jumping and eventing were interviewed about their experiences when their equine partner suffered a serious, or career-ending injury. Interview questions explored the athletes’ careers, their initial reaction to the injury, coping mechanisms and the return to elite competition.Results: Thematic analysis revealed that depression, denial and guilt were common emotional responses, similarly experience by athletes in response to their own injuries. Injury to their horse led riders to question their identity as elite athletes, and question their careers within equestrian sport. Conclusions: Riders perceive the horse as part of the ‘athlete’ package thus are at twice the risk of injury-related psychological stress when compared to other athletes. Coping resources for riders are needed within equestrian sport to minimise the psychological impact of injury, particularly at elite level. Goal setting and social support systems are beneficial for coping with injury in other athletic environments and should be implemented within specific sports science support for elite riders.",
author = "Emma Davies and Richard Collins and Julia Ennis",
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note = "Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, DESP2016 ; Conference date: 14-12-2015 Through 15-12-2015",

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Davies, E, Collins, R & Ennis, J 2015, 'Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners' Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, Leeds, United Kingdom, 14/12/15 - 15/12/15, .

Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners. / Davies, Emma; Collins, Richard; Ennis, Julia.

2015. Poster session presented at Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, Leeds, United Kingdom.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

TY - CONF

T1 - Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners

AU - Davies, Emma

AU - Collins, Richard

AU - Ennis, Julia

PY - 2015/12

Y1 - 2015/12

N2 - Objectives: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the emotional and psychological responses of elite riders to the injury of their equine partners. Design: A phenomenological design was implemented to identify common perceived meanings of a shared experience (equine injury). Methods: Five riders competing internationally in dressage, show jumping and eventing were interviewed about their experiences when their equine partner suffered a serious, or career-ending injury. Interview questions explored the athletes’ careers, their initial reaction to the injury, coping mechanisms and the return to elite competition.Results: Thematic analysis revealed that depression, denial and guilt were common emotional responses, similarly experience by athletes in response to their own injuries. Injury to their horse led riders to question their identity as elite athletes, and question their careers within equestrian sport. Conclusions: Riders perceive the horse as part of the ‘athlete’ package thus are at twice the risk of injury-related psychological stress when compared to other athletes. Coping resources for riders are needed within equestrian sport to minimise the psychological impact of injury, particularly at elite level. Goal setting and social support systems are beneficial for coping with injury in other athletic environments and should be implemented within specific sports science support for elite riders.

AB - Objectives: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the emotional and psychological responses of elite riders to the injury of their equine partners. Design: A phenomenological design was implemented to identify common perceived meanings of a shared experience (equine injury). Methods: Five riders competing internationally in dressage, show jumping and eventing were interviewed about their experiences when their equine partner suffered a serious, or career-ending injury. Interview questions explored the athletes’ careers, their initial reaction to the injury, coping mechanisms and the return to elite competition.Results: Thematic analysis revealed that depression, denial and guilt were common emotional responses, similarly experience by athletes in response to their own injuries. Injury to their horse led riders to question their identity as elite athletes, and question their careers within equestrian sport. Conclusions: Riders perceive the horse as part of the ‘athlete’ package thus are at twice the risk of injury-related psychological stress when compared to other athletes. Coping resources for riders are needed within equestrian sport to minimise the psychological impact of injury, particularly at elite level. Goal setting and social support systems are beneficial for coping with injury in other athletic environments and should be implemented within specific sports science support for elite riders.

M3 - Poster

ER -

Davies E, Collins R, Ennis J. Psychological and Emotional Responses of Elite Riders to the Injury of their Equine Partners. 2015. Poster session presented at Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference 2016, Leeds, United Kingdom.