Understanding the Barriers and Facilitators to Help-Seeking in Irish Equestrian Sport

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Equestrian media has highlighted an interest in the impact of mental health on performance and help-seeking behaviours. Due to the dearth of research into equestrian sports, this study aimed to understand rider mental health in equestrian sport and identify the barriers and facilitators to help-seeking among equestrian athletes. Seven equestrian athletes participated in semi-structured interviews about their experiences with mental health and the currently available services. The themes generated for riders’ understanding of mental health were multidimensional and cost. The themes for barriers were influences and education. Consequently, the facilitators of seeking help were strength and guidance. The findings support previous studies among jockeys and other athletic populations. Implications for this research highlight the potential for mental health literacy programs and increased services. Further recommendations for future research suggest examining the current levels of mental health literacy and the differences experienced between disciplines.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
JournalEuropean Journal of Sport Sciences
Publication statusPublished - 25 Dec 2023

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