Our aim in this invited commentary is to stimulate discussion among sport psychology researchers and practitioners regarding the unique developmental challenges and possibilities that Olympic and Paralympic athletes are undergoing during their final – extended year of the Tokyo 2020 quadrenium. We begin the commentary with COVID-19 pandemic (C-19) context setting, proceed with discussing transitional and holistic perspectives on athletes’ Olympic/Paralympic journey, outline three potential pathway scenarios and “C-19 as a possibility-provider” coping (meta-) scenario for Olympic/Paralympic athletes, and finalise our commentary with a summary of messages intended to invite further discussion and collaboration.


© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.

Cite as

Stambulova, N., Schinke, R., Lavallee, D. & Wylleman, P. 2020, 'The COVID-19 pandemic and Olympic/Paralympic athletes’ developmental challenges and possibilities in times of a global crisis-transition', International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1080/1612197X.2020.1810865

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Last updated: 17 June 2022
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