Here is where it gets difficult. While almost all addiction tendencies are treated with the implementation of therapy and physical exercise, how do you help an addicted athlete? This is a very troubling and interesting case, as it involves a variety of specific psychological mechanisms that need to be put in place, in order to start a “healing process”. Today, we take a very significant look at how sports athletes are affected by the addiction of gambling.
A Concept of Achieving
Success in the field of sport is achieved through grueling effort and the right mental conditioning. The psychological factor is applied to many other factors besides sports, but it is the physical aspect that makes things difficult. Athletes have learned and accepted the concept that through practice and work, they will witness their own development and success – this is exactly why they often fall victim to gambling.
When a person who is used to measure success in a different way tries to apply their system in the world of gambling, they lose. This is observed more with student-athletes, rather than with older sportsmen as more experience in life and craft is usually associated with the creation of a more “careful demeanor”. Young people are known to take a lot more risks, and in the world of gambling, this results in even harder losses.
Once a student-athlete has reached the point of no return, there are certain types of problems that are observed. First, comes the anti-social behavior – loss makes everyone irritable, especially if it has resulted because of their own actions. Next, is a decreased academic performance; grades will start to go down, and last but not least is the failure in sports performance. Since the body’s condition is a reflection of the mental status, it doesn’t come as a surprise.
Even Successful Athletes Aren’t Immune
The famous basketball player Michael Jordan is known to have lost $5 million on a craps table. British football legend Wayne Rooney reportedly lost $100,000 in two hours. The list goes on and on. Pathological gambling is a cruel mistress, and the more successful you feel that you are in your sport, the more you will lose. It is only when the gambling addicts realize that the personal confidence in their respective fields, will not help them in any way when applied on the casino tables.
Why Are Athletes in General More Affected?
Professional sports players have a highly developed competitive personality. Losing is synonymous to failure, and in the world of sports when you fail, you need to start training again and try again – this doesn’t transcribe well in the world of gambling. A scientific study shows that often athletes build a tolerance to the “rush” they experience when they are engaged in any sort of competition, and only by increasing their bets further, they can feel something again.
The Road to Recovery for Sports Players is much more Difficult
Coming back from a serious gambling addiction can be described as learning to walk again. Re-learning the values of their craft, setting achievable and realistic goals for the future, being careful about how much effort they put in each activity… Recovering athletes aren’t that much different from drug addicts or alcoholics. The first step is realizing that they have a problem. After that, it is a long walk to recovery. While there is always a risk of a relapse especially if other aspects of their life have caused depression, psychological treatment provides them with the means to keep their demons at bay.