San Diego teens develop sports psychology to prevent athlete burnout

Nikhil Berry, a swimmer at Menlo School in Atherton, and Sydney Randolph, a volleyball player at San Dieguito Academy in San Diego, know firsthand how difficult it can be to maintain a positive mental outlook.

“There are high school athletes who are often training much longer than the NCAA requirement because there is (no requirement) for high school athletes,” Berry said. “And at the same time, most high schools are not even equipped to handle the regular mental health challenges of their students, let alone the athletic mental health challenges.”

GOAT Mentality (greatest of all time) is a program that will provide coping mechanisms for student-athletes and those who support them. The program consists of a series of athlete interviews and curriculum videos with sports psychologists. The aim of the new initiative is to normalize discussions of mental health in athletics.

San Diego teens develop sports psychology to prevent athlete burnout

Athletes can find themselves stressed and depleted.

“(I’m) trying to create a more positive environment in my team itself, and providing some, like tips here and there from GOAT mentality that I’ve learned about in my … research with GOAT, I’ve kind of been able to incorporate that into a little bit of my team setting,” Randolph said. “And I’ve noticed that that has been some positive and healthy changes, both in the team dynamic and the team’s mental health and kind of the way that we run a little bit.”

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