Moderator variables, characteristics of persons or their environments make individuals more or less vulnerable to the negative effects of stressful life events. Very little research has examined how
Indian athletes manage or cope with stressful experiences and the influence of support factors that positively or negatively influence the athletes coping skills. The present study was an attempt to
analyze support infrastructure and coping skills among Indian sports persons.
The participants for the study included 216 national level sportspersons (126 male and 90 female) belonging to the following sports disciplines. The participants had been playing at the national and
international level in their respective sport. The support infrastructure was assessed using the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS) by Zimet et. Al (1988); and coping style
was assessed by Athletic Coping Style Inventory (ASCI-28) by Smith et al (1995). To data were analyzed using t-test, correlation, analysis of variance and Scheffe’s post hoc test.
The results indicated that female sportspersons showed significantly higher values for goal setting and mental preparation; whereas male sportspersons. Sportspersons belonging to individual sports
showed significantly higher scores on goal setting; mental preparation; concentration; confidence and achievement motivation; and coachability, whereas sportspersons belonging to team sports
showed higher values on freedom from worry. Sportspersons belonging to badminton and swimming showed higher values for family sub factor of support infrastructure as compared to sportspersons of other
sports. Support infrastructure sub variables showed significant relationship to personal coping resources of the sportspersons.
The study results provide insights to interactional model of coping of Indian sportspersons, where their coping styles and strategies are functional to both personal and situational factors. The
results warrant the need for developing or refining support infrastructure mechanisms across sports disciplines for Indian sportspersons.