In all likelihood, you have already heard about one of the behavioural addictions which is an addiction to sport. Actually, with the increase of sport promotion and creating more facilities and equipment for sport, more and more people are becoming addicted to it. This might seem like a healthy addiction as an addict is ready to spend all of his or her free time exercising. In the reality, it is not thus bright though. Unfortunately, severely addicted people have to exercise not only during the entire free time but almost all of the time, resigning from meeting other people, completing their work or even from other physical needs such as sleep, rest or even the time required for recovery after an injury or illness.
There are several reasons for sport addiction which will be discussed in this article.
The types of sport addiction
Considering the reasons causing sport addiction, one can divide all the cases of such an addiction into two major groups. The first group is characterised with the primary type of sport addiction which is not related to any eating disorders. Statistically, the majority of addicts in this group are men. The second group of addicts is primarily women and the addiction of these people itself is accompanied by eating disorders. This type of sport addiction is usually referred to as secondary sport addiction.
The common reasons for sport addiction
As you can imagine, for people with eating disorders sport is one of the major ways for controlling weight. For this reason people can easily start addicted to physical activity adding too much significance to it as they feel it determines the success of their body weight maintenance.
This can actually happen to people with absolutely different types of eating disorders whether it is anorexia nervosa or binge eating.
When it comes to primary sport addiction, the reasons for it can be absolutely different, however, in the majority of times people addicted to sport are actually prone to getting addicted in the first place. Some of them might have already struggled with other addictions and found addiction to sport to be the healthiest alternative.
Yet, there are many underlying psychological issues which can be the roots of addiction. In any way, for addicts sport becomes a copying mechanisms with stress and anxiety.
There is also a very peculiar effect accompanying sport addiction. Actually, many sport addicts are getting into sport so much after experiencing a rather stressful situation such as moving out to another city or divorce. Working on one’s own body gives people a feeling of controlling the situation and this is what they are seeking under such untypical conditions for them.
Needless to say, people suffering from OCD which stands for compulsive-obsessive disorder are also in the group of risk of developing an addiction to sport.
Why should one get rid of sport addiction?
It is crucial to address this problem since excessive exercises will inevitably start interfering with one’s life making it more and more difficult for addicts. With time, an addiction will require more and more time making a person refuse from various crucial tasks, seeing other people and even ignoring physical needs. For instance, a common situation is a sport addict who has lost one’s family because of the excessive time spent on exercising and is now on the verge of one’s own physical endurance as he or she has to significantly reduce the amount of time earmarked for sleeping in order to be able to keep on exercising more an more and still be able to go to work.
This can be extreme.ly challenging let alone dangerous, as sport addicts usually keep on exercising even when they are ill or suffering from an injury or they can easily cause such an injury themselves by over exercising.
What can be done in order to overcome a sport addiction?
Unfortunately, just like it is in the case of the majority of addictions affecting people, there is no single approach working for everyone. Certainly, it can be effective to see a psychologist who will help a person to work on the psychological roots of the addiction which is absolutely necessary for getting rid of it for good. Without such professional help , an addict might find it rather challenging to change one’s approach to sport.
Definitely, consulting a personal coach can be useful as well since such a specialist will be able to alter the workouts in the way making them effective and healthy in the first place.
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