Lausanne, June 18 (IANS) Managing mental health and sports careers was found as the biggest challenge for athletes during the lockdowns of varying degrees imposed in most countries around the world to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, a survey conducted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has revealed.
The survey was conducted among more than 4,000 athletes and entourage members from 135 countries. The majority of athletes spent their time under restrictive measures put in place to curb the spread of coronavirus.
It showed that 50 per cent of athletes struggled with the complexity of conducting proper training as a consequence of the restrictions imposed in most countries to contain the virus.
The lack of access to sports facilities and to a normal training schedule, but also the isolation from the wider athlete community, led to a struggle to stay mentally fit. Sixty-three per cent of the entourage members who took the survey also said they found it hard to keep their athletes motivated.
"It is very hard to train due to many of the restrictions," one elite athlete from South Africa who took the survey was quoted as saying by the IOC. "Training adds structure to my life, and I feel that the lack of structure without training is negatively affecting my mental health. Everything I'm struggling with is linked together. They can't be viewed as separate."