Linking sleep and mental health in sport

Do elite sports people have problems settling back into regular routines after retiring from years of gruelling training and competition? How does their sleep, mental health and wellbeing change?

That question is being investigated by Ashley Montero, PhD candidate in the College of Education, Psychology and Social Work, who has contacted sporting clubs around the world to be part of his investigation.

Supervised by Professor Murray Drummond (SHAPE Research Centre Director), Professor Robert Adams (FHMRI Sleep Health Medical Director) and Dr John Baranoff (The University of Adelaide Lecturer), Mr Montero has received more than 700 responses to his online survey so far.

“This project will be the first of its kind to combine validated questionnaires on sleep and mental health, objective sleep assessment and qualitative interviews to assess the prevalence and severity of disorders amongst current and retired athletes,” Mr Montero says.

“Participants do not necessarily have to have competed at elite levels, and will include amateur, semi-professional, and college/university level athletes.”

In addition to providing useful information for sleep and mental health in sport, the research aims to highlight links between sleep complaints and mental health in general.

As well as writing his PhD, Mr Montero is doing research at the Adelaide Institute for Sleep Health at Flinders University (FHMRI Sleep Health). He is a regular rugby union player and coach with Onkaparinga Rugby Union Football Club.



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College of Medicine and Public Health Flinders University Sport & Fitness Students