A thematic-synthesis of self-care in sport psychology practitioners

Alessandro Quartiroli, Daniel R. F. Martin, Heather Hunter, Chris R. D. Wagstaff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Self-care has been identified as essential for promoting well-being among psychology professionals and an imperative for practitioners. Nevertheless, the value of self-care for sport psychology practitioners (SPPs) has only received limited research attention. Yet, a growing body of work has emerged, offering helpful knowledge to SPPs throughout the professional developmental span. A synthesis of the existing literature on SPPs’ self-care could offer the knowledge foundation for training programs on SPPs’ self-care. We systematically reviewed the existing literature focused on self-care among sport psychology practitioners. Using PRISMA guidelines, an initial database search identified 1,837 research records. After removing duplicate studies, screening by title and abstract, and assessing full-text article eligibility, we selected 15 articles for inclusion. Analysis of these articles resulted in three prevailing themes: (a) sport psychology practitioner’s self-care; (b) effective self-care; (c) connected care: A collaborative lens on individual self-care. These findings offer a significant insight to the literature on self-care in sport psychology practitioners. The synthesis also points to the important role others play in developing, implementing, and maintaining effective individualised SPP self-care. Based on these findings, we offer recommendations for professional bodies and education providers regarding the alignment of training routes and continuing professional development programs with the extant literature on self-care.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
Early online date28 Dec 2023
Publication statusEarly online - 28 Dec 2023


  • effective practice
  • ethics
  • professional formation
  • professional practice

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