Young athletes “under too much pressure”

16.05.2023 - 09:36
Young athletes “under too much pressure”
An increasing number of young athletes suffer injuries due to overtraining, say physiotherapists
ÍSF, the Faroese sports federation, recently held a theme day about injuries, pressure and drop-out rates among young athletes. Photo: ÍSF

An ever-increasing pressure to perform is taking its toll on young athletes.

This was the topic of a recent theme day hosted by ÍSF, the Faroese sports federation.

The main conclusion of the meeting was that more should be done to limit the pressure we put on our young athletes and instead focus on well-being and creating a community spirit through sports.

Psychological and physical pressure

Lars Erik Espedalen, a Norwegian researcher who studies child and youth sports, held a talk in which he warned against a growing international trend where young people are put under pressure to perform and follow long-term development goals.

A Faroese study on mental health in young people backs this view, stating that such long-term performance goals may give children the impression that decisions made early in life are final.

This pressure may result in mental and physical exhaustion, according to Annika Helgadóttir and Monika Mohr, who conducted the study on behalf of the Public Health Board.

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“Living up to high expectations requires a lot of training, and this training is often quite monotonous.

With this high intensity, the body does not get the rest it requires, and that can easily result in injuries,” the researchers said.

Faroese physiotherapists are reporting an increasing number of young athletes seeking treatment for injuries caused by excessive and monotonous training.

“At least half of these injuries can be avoided by adding more variety to the training,” said physiotherapists Bjarti Thomsen and Jóhan Esmarsson Heimustovu.


Read the Faroese version of this article here.

More Faroese News in English.

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