“I was nothing and no one without sports,” writes Kimberly Carducci in her debut book, The I of the Tiger: The Athlete Identity and Remedying Sport’s Greatest Conflicts. Carducci continues, “For the first time since I was five years old, it felt as if gravity, the commonality that kept all beings rooted on Earth, suddenly stopped and I had no idea what was up, down, or sideways. So much free time and nothing to do. It was paralyzing. It almost drowned me.”
Fortunately, Carducci was able to rise above her darkest moments after retiring as a D1 swimmer at the University of North Carolina but many top sports competitors don’t. In The I of the Tiger, Carducci uncovers the many layers, fears, insecurities, and complexities the athlete identity produces. She offers insights on how this identity negatively impacts mental health and the ways athletes can navigate pivotal transitions.
“When life hits us hardest, it’s important to understand the biological and psychological effects of pain to shed light on how we can best process our emotions.” offers Carducci. “With this understanding, we can move past the shock of a situation, grow stronger with a refreshed identity, and adopt a framework for life that encourages strength, clarity, and light.”
Kim Carducci’s deftly written book combines heartfelt personal anecdotes with references to several historical and prominent athlete figures in our world today, such as Tonya Harding and Michael Phelps aimed at discovering:
How competition influences athletes and their mental health
Why athletes build an inflated sense of ego, based on physical capabilities
How injury and retirement deflate athlete’s sense of worth
Daily implications of being a fierce competitor
Daily guiding principles for athletes on their transition journey
The art of letting go of things athletes once leaned on that wasn’t sturdy enough to support them beyond sports
The I of the Tiger: The Athlete Identity and Remedying Sport’s Greatest Conflicts is available September 21, 2021, everywhere books are sold. Learn more at www.everythingathletes.com.
About Kimberly Carducci
Kimberly is a former DI swimmer, mental health advocate, podcaster, and Founder of Everything Athletes.
In her athletic career, Kim struggled with depression and has since dedicated herself to helping other athletes cope with the realities of the sports world.
Kim founded Everything Athletes, an online refuge for competitors, where she offers the resources and tools needed to thrive in sports. Kim resides in Atlanta, GA.
Learn More About Kim & Everything Athletes:
Facebook: Everything Athletes