EAP and the High Performance Athlete
Revision with unchanged content. It has been noted that there is comparably little if any, structured and practical support structures in place to deal with the broader spectrum of emotional and psychological needs/well-being of high performance or elite athletes. The physical support base of elite athletes is based on the relationship between athlete and coach the very essence of sport. The coach fulfills a powerful role in being primarily responsible for creating the proper environment and for transmitting the technical, social, moral and physical elements of the sport experience to the athlete. The coach alone is not capable of providing all the advice, expertise and support required. Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) form the basis of additional support, sometimes extended to family members, in many organisations. The support provided covers many areas and is based on the principle that employees with extended personal problems are more likely to underperform than those who are able to cope with their problems. Sport, today is unashamedly, even exuberantly big business. Money has become every sport s life blood. Athletes are under immense pressure to perform. This potentially leads to a situation where the needs of the athlete as an ordinary human, being facing the same problems as everyone else are lost.