A Comparison of Sport Personality and Mental Health Characteristics of Disabled and Non-disabled Male Athletes

By Hossein Sepasi, Parivash Nourbakhsh and Hamide Aghaei.

Published by The International Journal of Health, Wellness and Society

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In the last decades, the mental health and personality characteristics of athletes, especially disabled athletes, have received special attention by researchers (Valliant, et al. 2010, Di Russo, et al. 1985) The purpose of this study is to compare sport personality characteristics (introversion / extraversion, adaptability, goal setting, anxiety, motive, potential) and mental health (depression, anxiety and insomnia, social dysfunction, somatic symptom) between disabled athletes and non-disabled athletes in individual and team sports. 110 disabled athletes in individual and team sports, and 110 non-disabled athletes in individual and team sports were selected through a random sampling. The Smith questionnaire (2003) and Goldberg questionnaire (GHQ-28) were used to measure sport personality characteristic and mental health of the subjects respectively. The validity and reliability of these instruments were reported to be successful in many different studies. The results of ANOVA at p < 0.05 indicated that there were significant differences between sport characteristics of disabled and non-disabled athletes both in team and individual sports (F = 5.10, p = 0.001). Further comparison showed the difference between sport characteristics of disabled athletes in team sports and non-disabled athletes in individual sports was significant. Disabled athletes in team sports (M = 346.48) scored better than non-athletes in individual sports (M = 339.23). The results of comparison between disabled athletes both in team and individual sports indicated that disabled subjects in team sports (M = 346.48) scored better in individual sports (M = 340.52). The differences were significant in comparing mental health between disabled athletes and non-athletes in both team and individual sports (F = 23.02, p = 0.0001). The results of the post hoc test indicated that non-disabled subjects in individual and team sports scored better in mental health than disabled subjects. So, it is suggested that the psychological functioning of disabled athletes in individual and team sports might be enhanced through active participation in athletic events.

Keywords: Personality, Mental Health, Disabled Athletes, Non-disabled Athletes

The International Journal of Health, Wellness and Society, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.111-118. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 231.938KB).

Dr. Hossein Sepasi

Professor, College of Physical Education, Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branch, Tehran, Tehran, Iran (Islamic Republic of)

Dr. Hossein Sepasi is a university professor at Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branch, Iran. He is a very well- known professor teaching advanced statistics and research methods courses at master and doctoral levels. He has different publications in statistics and measurement and evaluation in physical education and sport sciences. His wife, Dr. Parivash Nourbakhsh, is also a professor at Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branch, Iran teaching motor behavior, sport management and research methods courses to graduate students.

Assoc. Prof. Parivash Nourbakhsh

Associate professor, College of physical education and sport sciences, Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branch, Tehran, Tehran, Iran (Islamic Republic of)

Dr. Parivash Nourbakhsh is an associate professor at Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branch, Iran. She teaches motor behaviour, sport management and research methods courses to graduate students. Her husband, Dr. Hossein Sepasi is also a professor at Islamic Azad University, Karaj Branh, Iran.

Hamide Aghaei

Physical Education Teacher, Karaj, Alborz, Iran (Islamic Republic of)

She is a graduate student and now working on her doctoral program in the field of her interest, physical education and sport sciences. In addition. she is also an instructor teaching physical education courses at university and high school levels.