Author: Taein Ka, Pima Community College
Our society today suffers from mental distress in many ways. I will write about mental problems, especially athletes as athletes. Athletes began to talk about inner mental distress, darkness, and fear. Players, who thought they were incarnations of strong mentality, indomitable will, and tenacity, began to shout that they were actually the same human beings, weak and hurt.
Tennis star Naomi Osaka is the representative. Naomi recently became the target of controversy at the French Open for not attending a post-match press conference, saying, “I will take care of myself and protect my mental health.”. Naomi had to disclose her inner mental problems due to criticism from the media that her participation in the press conference was a sacred obligation and threats from the organizers of the event. “Athletes are also human,” Naomi said in an article in Time. “Everyone struggles with their own problems that others don’t know. Every human goes through that to some extent.”. Naomi’s desperate cry flooded with messages of support from countless people suffering from the same problem, and celebrities also expressed their support for Naomi. (“she can’t speak Japanese. Why would she sing the torch?” … Mixed blood star ‘ Hitting Osaka’)
American gymnast Simone Arianne Biles, who competed in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, is also a good example. Biles, the world’s top player, withdrew from most of the matches during the Olympics, saying she would “protect my mental health.”. She also said that he/she feels afraid of his/her own talent, her high-level movement, unlike in the past. Some criticized her decision as “selfish”and “weak,” but Biles countered, “I wasn’t born to be a gymnast.”.
American women’s shot put silver medalist Raven Saunders is also a hot topic. Saunders marked the X with both hands at the medal ceremony as a sign of solidarity toward oppressed people around the world. As a black woman and a homosexual, Saunders, himself a minority, proudly revealed that she was fighting depression. Saunders stated that her mission is to be ‘who I am’. (“We’re human.” ” Gymnastics fairy down under Olympic pressure)
Regarding this phenomenon, the New York Times analyzed, “The long-standing taboo that sports players should not reveal their mental problems has been broken.” In the past, there were players who suffered from mental problems. In a recent survey released by the IOC, 32% of players said they were suffering from mental problems. But athletes have to be strong, they have not been able to reveal themselves because of the pressure and pressure they have to overcome. Naomi and Bales said ‘also athletes are human’.
Personally, I don’t think an athlete is particularly mentally better than an ordinary person. In general, I think athletes’ mental abilities are overrated. Athletes who have exercised in our country are more likely to experience more serious mental problems amid continuously exposed violence and one-sided coaching culture. The agency leading the move said SNS is making players even more unhappy. It’s easy to say that you don’t need to care, but if you see all the mockery and sarcasm pouring into you, you’ll be affected in some way.
It breaks athletes’ hearts when I think of the players who are being attacked by malicious comments on all kinds of articles. That’s why fans and teams should take care of each other’s SNS and take care of their mental health. Players should also suspect mental health problems if they experience long-term negative emotions such as anxiety, despair, sadness, guilt and loss, or extreme fatigue, lack of sleep, a sharp decrease in appetite or indifference to what they enjoyed before. Psychologists stressed that tracking stress symptoms and moods helps understand the causes of mental health problems such as depression. One way to track stress-causing factors is to record changes in your daily mood. Long-term anxiety and panic are reactions to early signs of acute stress. Psychological problems should be considered if you are not in a low mood at a general level, but if you suddenly lose your appetite or do not sleep properly beyond this. And you should focus on maintaining comfort and prevent negative emotions from lasting for a long time. In this way, athletes can manage mental problems and focus on their main job.
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