Ivarsson A, McCall A, Mutch S, Giuliani A, Bassetto R, Fanchini M
Sci Med Footb 5 (sup1) 70-75 [2021-11-00; online 2021-08-24]
To describe high-level footballers' levels and changes in mental health and well-being throughout a 8-week period of lockdown and restricted training during the COVID-19 pandemic. One-hundred and one players belonging to four teams (women's and men's, first and U19 teams) of the same Italian Serie A club participated in the study. Data were collected through an online questionnaire, and administered at 2, 3, 5, 7 and 9 weeks after the start of the lockdown . Well-being, positive and negative affects measurements were examined. Across the five measures, 36% of players reported clinical levels in depressive symptoms (scores ≤50) on at least one occasion. Thirteen percent of the players reported clinical levels on > 50% of the occasions. There was a decrease in depressive symptoms and negative affects over the period. No change was found in positive affects. High number of players reportedclinical levels of depressive symptoms compared to what was found previously in high-level athletes. The number decrease during the 8-week period. A similar trend was found for negative affects.Despite a higher prevalence in depressive symptoms earlier during lockdown, this improved as players progressed towards fewer restrictions.