The impact of interpersonal violence in youth sport on adult psychopathology

T. Vertommen, J. Kampen, N. Schipper-van Veldhoven, Katarzyna Uzieblo, F. Van Den Eede

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract (Journal)


Introduction A recent cohort study in the Netherlands and Belgium showed that 38% of children experienced psychological violence, 11% physical violence, and 14% sexual violence in sport (Vertommen et al., 2016). This study aims to explore the long-term consequences on anxiety, depression and somatic complaints in adults who experienced psychological, physical or sexual violence in the specific context of organized youth sport. Methods A web survey in a representative sample of adults, prescreened on having participated in organized sport before the age of 18 (n = 4043) was conducted. In this sample, depression, anxiety and somatic problems were assessed using the brief symptom inventory. A generalized linear model was used to quantify the impact of experiencing severe interpersonal violence in sport on psychopathology. Results All three types of severe interpersonal violence (psychological, physical and sexual) were significantly associated with the total score and the subscales of the brief symptom inventory. The effect remains significant after controlling for socio-demographics, as well as disability, sexual orientation, adverse childhood experiences outside sport, recent trauma and family history of psychological problems. Conclusions Experiencing interpersonal violence against in youth sport is associated with mental health problems in adulthood. This is an important finding to consider in child protection policy in sport.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S748-S748
JournalEuropean Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017
Event25th european congress of psychiatry - Florence, Italy
Duration: 1 Apr 20174 Apr 2017


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