Sources of stress and coping strategies of Kenyan university athletes: Implications for coaches
Litaba, S. A.
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The debate on whether participation in college sports is a “buffer” or “stressor” to student-athletes has not yielded conclusive consensus. The purpose of this study was to assess the sources of stress and coping strategies utilized by Kenyan university athletes. It was predicted that the sources of stress and coping strategies will not differ based on the university athletes’ gender, age, and level of study. Data were collected through the use of modified version of COPE inventory from 210 university athletes (males 60.7% and females 38.9%). Data were analyzed through independent t-test and one way ANOVA. Results showed that university athletes’ sources of stress were mainly interpersonal and environmental sources. These sources of stress varied significantly based on age (F3,201=3.32, p<0.021), gender (t=2.18, df,202,p<0.03) and year of study (F 4,203=4.00,p<0.04). University athletes utilized both approach and avoidance coping strategies in equal measures and with minimal differences of the predictor variables of gender (t=4.05 df=195 p<0.000) and age (F3,195=3.26, p<0.002). It is concluded that Kenyan university athletes are faced with stress levels and as such coping strategic urgent intervention measures are needed from university coaches, administrators and counselors.