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Table 7 Psychological challenges and development in male youth rugby union players from England

From: Applied Sport Science for Male Age-Grade Rugby Union in England

StudySampleLevelMeasuresResults
Nicholls and Polman [105]11U18 national squadStressor checklist, coping responses, perceived coping effectivenessMost frequently-cited stressors: making a mental or physical error, receiving coach/parental criticism, and injury; coping strategies: blocking, increasing effort, and taking advice: blocking and technical adjustment rated as more effective strategies
Madigan et al. [104]13Further education
Academy athletes
Perfectionism, injuryPerfectionism positively predicted injury; only perfectionistic concerns emerged as a significant positive predictor; likelihood of sustaining injury increased twofold for each 1 SD increase in perfectionistic concerns
Hill and Appleton [103]202U19 youthAthlete burnout, multidimensional perfectionism, perfectionistic cognitionsFrequency of perfectionistic cognitions positively related to all symptoms of athlete burnout; frequency of perfectionistic cognitions explained 3–4% unique variance in symptoms of athlete burnout after controlling for self-oriented and socially prescribed dimensions of perfectionism
Hill et al. [102]15Premiership academy directors and head coachesInterview guide explored psychological aspects that may facilitate or derail talent development processes positivePositive psychological characteristics: cognitive ability, competitiveness, confidence and self-belief, consistency, courage, cultural identity, developmental awareness, driving group standards, effective communication, emotional intelligence, flexibility and adaptability, game understanding, grit.
Dual-effect psychological characteristics: aggression, obsessive passion, over-commitment, over-confidence, perfectionism, preestablished frameworks and beliefs, work-life balance.
Negative psychological characteristics: avoidance-based coping strategies, complacency, disorganised, expectation and entitlement, failure to overcome challenge, inappropriate goals, lack of awareness, lack of commitment, loss of focus/easily distracted, mental health, negative attitude, poor communicators, psychological burnout, self-doubt, self-handicapping, shyness.
McCarthy et al. [106]821U18 academyPlayer birth month distributionSkewed birth date distribution across quartiles between observed and expected values; clear bias with Q1 (n = 336, 41%) and Q2 (n = 175, 22%), different to Q3 (n = 176, 21%) and Q4 (n = 134, 16%)
  1. Q quartile (Q1 = September to November, Q2 = December to February, Q3 = March to May, Q4 = June to August).