What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

Caution, the sport is addictive. Together with psychologist

Victoria Cailin

we’ll figure out what dependence on sport is and how it affects a person’s life, and at the same time we’ll make sure that the editors of The Challenger don’t have such a dependency (or still ?).

Sports and fitness are an integral part of the life of a modern person. Sports activities temper character, instill teamwork skills, and indeed are good for health. Regular physical activities

contribute to the strengthening of the cardiovascular system, lowering the risk of osteoporosis and depression, and even prolonging life.

The word "addiction" for many is associated with cigarettes, alcohol and bad habits. It is hard to imagine that a passion for physical activity can have flaws. Nevertheless, even amateur athletes from time to time experience euphoria after training. It occurs due to hormones - endorphins and dopamines, which are released into the blood during physical activity and become one of the reasons for the formation of addiction. But there are other factors.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

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Dependency from sports is an unhealthy obsession with training. Its symptoms are similar to the symptoms of any other addiction, among them:

  • feeling of rising after a workout,
  • feeling unwell and depressed when training for some reason no,
  • uncontrolled desire to train,
  • refusal of other things in favor of training,
  • inability to reduce the load in a timely manner.

And it is also characteristic for a dependent person to go in cycles in sports; get involved in addictive behavior, even if you want to stop or physical activity is harmful to health; get involved in addictive behavior secretly from others.

Sports addicts rarely themselves notice something is wrong and, as a result, do not turn to a psychologist or psychotherapist for help.

Anyway, few people take this kind of addiction seriously, because there are much more terrible habits. Nevertheless, dependence on sports exists and can greatly poison life.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

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More all at risk are those who are trying by all means to become the owner of an ideal figure, lose weight, build muscle. Low self-esteem can also become the reason for the formation of dependence - when a person tries to defeat his complexes through successes in sports.

In addition, there are people who, in principle, are prone to various kinds of addictions.

So, scientists from the University of North Carolina say that 15% of sports-dependent people smoke, use alcohol or drugs. Another 25% experience other types of addictions, such as sex or shopping.

Sports psychologist Josephine Perry


that the most dangerous from the point of view of the formation of dependence are sports such as long-distance and extra-long distance running (marathon , ultramarathon), cycling, triathlon. And 44.

7% of the runners, cyclists and triathletes surveyed by her turned out to be dependent on their hobbies. Josephine believes that gadgets also influence the formation of an unhealthy attitude to sports: smart watches and applications that track workouts, as well as social networks where marathon runners and triathletes share their successes in pursuit of likes.

In some cases, people begin to play sports to fill the void of a previous addiction. Such athletes also run the risk of being too carried away by physical activity.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

Photo: shutterstock.


One or two workouts - not yet addiction, but it is with such useful activities that an unhealthy hobby begins. At first, classes give pleasure, and then grow into almost the only affordable way to maintain a good mood. A crisis occurs when a workout takes precedence over all other things, which leads to unpleasant consequences.

Yes, excessive enthusiasm for sports can bring more harm to health than good. When there are too many trainings, and their intensity goes off scale, the athlete does not have time to recover.

Some are so obsessed with sports that they continue to train with injuries, which only exacerbate the situation. And by the way, with excessive loads, the risk of developing osteoporosis and heart disease increases.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

Photo: shutterstock. com

One who is addicted from training, without them can’t feel happy. Ordinary life for such a person becomes boring.

In addition, over time, the athlete develops resistance to euphoria, he needs more and more load in order to feel the same effect from training. Once he stops studying for a while, he begins to experience something similar to withdrawal symptoms, which is accompanied by depression and anxiety.

People who are keen on fitness or sports, constantly they follow their rivals in social networks, compare their successes with their own, and this is not good. There is always someone who has run a marathon or overcame the IRONMAN distance faster. This causes envy or a sense of personal inferiority.

A sports addict can easily cancel a work meeting , give up gatherings with friends or sacrifice dinner with your family just because he needs to train. Sometimes this leads to layoffs, a change in social circle, problems in family life.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

Photo: shutterstock. com

Commitment good for sports, but in moderation. To understand whether you are addicted to sports or not, answer these questions - if more than half of them are positive, there is such a chance.

  1. Training is very important to me.
  2. I am constantly increasing the volume of training.
  3. I train in order to improve my mood.
  4. I feel bad when I can’t train.
  5. I feel guilty when I miss classes.

  6. After the break, I often start to train with more intensity.
  7. Without sports, I do not see the point in life.
  8. Competitions and preparation for them leads to conflicts at work, in the family, with friends.

The main thing on the way to solving any psychological problem is to become aware of it and, if you can’t cope on your own, don’t delay and promptly consult a psychologist.

What is addiction to sports and how dangerous is it

Photo: shutterstock.


And yet few people would come to be ashamed of their obsession with training. Dependence on sports, unlike many others, is socially favored. She is not shy. They are even proud of it, putting on display the tracks of runs and medals. But is sport worth the sacrifice? Many dancers suffer from foot injuries, boxers suffer brain damage, and football players suffer sprains and fractures.

In the case of professionals, this is a fee for gold medals and skill, but are these risks justified for amateurs ?. .



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