Edgar Kazibwe is championing sports psychology in Uganda

Who is Edgar Kazibwe?

I am an aspiring sport psychologist starting training with Staffordshire University (UK).I made the cut based on my background of a Bachelor’s Degree in Community Psychology from Makerere University (2014 – 2017) and a mentorship programme facilitated by UK charity – equitysport and UK-based sport psychology consultancy – Optimise Potential with Uganda Cricket Association. Before University, I majored in core sciences at Ndejje Senior Secondary School between 2007 to 2012. I also have a journalism background.

What inspired you to become a sport psychologist?

I initially tried to get a job after my A-level and I was very lucky to be offered one at Kawowo Sports. Going into university, I thought I needed to find a way my work was supposed to fuse with the community psychology course I was studying at Makerere University. Before long, I discovered the sport psychology field and did extensive research around it. Eventually the interest kept growing as I went further with my studies in campus. Unfortunately none of my family members studied sport psychology.

How and why did you transition from active journalism to sport psychology?

The transition isn’t really complete, I still do journalism but because I have to work in both environments, I make sure both are not overlapping and it is a tricky one to work with but it has been a learning curve on my part.

What does your typical day include?

My typical day involves early morning reading. At about 5:00am, I am usually already up and reading a couple of research papers and lots of literature about the field and sport in general. Two hours after that, I am usually preparing to head to a field to work with my clients. In the afternoon, I may run other personal errands depending what is the agenda. Late in the evening, I make my reflections and plan for another day and its activities.

Who are your clients?

My clients have been Uganda Cricket Association – the national representative teams; including Victoria Pearls, Baby Victoria Pearls, Cricket Cranes and Baby Cricket Cranes.
I am currently working around continuing that work but I am also keen on working with other sport federations and categories because the sport is 80 percent mental across the board.

Anything to be proud of as a sport psychologist?

I have grown as an individual especially by using the skills I train most of my clients and I feel I am a better person generally.
I am also honoured to have made very good friends through my work but importantly developing a support system in Executitve Director of equitysport, Tim Harper and my mentors – Optimise Potential’s Dr. Hannah Stoyel and Serena MacLeod.
I am proud to also contribute to Uganda’s mental health support efforts specifically to local sport at large.

What’s challenging about your job?

We still have a huge job to raise awareness of how important the mental aspect is in sports.
We constantly use our brains to do activities in our lives. Sport isn’t different and if we can train the brain, our performances are bound to sharply improve.
Sport psychology is one of the most outstanding fields and if respected just like it is being done in countries like the United Kingdom, USA and the like, success will become a norm, not only on the local but global stage.

Where do you see yourself in the next five or so years?

I would like to expand my experience over different sports categories, raise more awareness about the importance of sport psychology in the region but as well facilitate a pathway, or foster one for future sport psychologists in Uganda.

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