Graduate Program

Clinical Psychology

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Author's Department


First Advisor

Wesley D. Allan


The ability to regulate emotion is necessary for adolescents to cope with everyday stressors and major life events. Sports participation has been linked positively to the ability to cope and regulate emotion. Athletic identity is a concept that has been linked to anxiety, burnout and lower academic performance; its relationship to emotion regulation had not yet been researched. This paper reviews the literature on athletic identity, sports participation, coping ability and emotional regulation. The current study examines the link between sports participation and athletic identity in youth and their ability to cope with stress and regulate their emotions. One hundred and seventy two rural, Midwestern high school students participated in the study. Athletic identity was correlated positively with emotion regulation. Sports participation was positively linked with emotion regulation. Clinical implications of the research, limitations, and suggestions for future studies are discussed.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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