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Abel Nogueira Lopez & Pavao Vlahek – Exploring the psychological limits of ultra-endurance

janvier 30 @ 1:00 - 2:00

Ultra-endurance disciplines have proliferated worldwide over the last 20 years (e.g., in 2019 alone, more than 669.000 runners contested more than 7000 ultra-endurance running events worldwide). From the ultra-marathons of the Ancient Olympic Games to cycling, swimming, or long-distance skiing, the physical and mental strain placed on the human body becomes the bond that holds such disciplines together through endurance, toughness, and competitiveness. Ultra-endurance athletes pushing their bodies and minds to unsuspected limits, continually testing anthropological and evolutionary resources to the test bordering on the counter-natural effort. Such is their capability that they have even been labelled as earthly demigods with the capacity to tolerate unsuspected efforts, pain, and suffering.

The “search for sensations”, “self-improvement” or “mental toughness” are just some of the labels used by ultra-endurance athletes to mask the existence of possible cases of subclinical psychopathology such as: narcissism, self-harm, coldness and emotional containment, obsession with success or avoidance of failure, addiction, depression, etc. However, there are many psychological qualities (resilience, concentration, pain management, commitment, etc.) to be highlighted in this population that can be very useful to apply in other contexts.

Taking this context into account, the main objective of this project is to try to understand the psychological mechanisms and factors that describe this population in order to both reduce those cases in which a risky practice occurs and to try to take advantage of their qualities in the day-to-day life of other populations.

This talk will take place on hybride mode, as Prof. Pavao Vlahek will give a part of it on zoom. Here some extracts of his CV:

– Senior lecturer in Physiotherapy Department, University North, Varaždin, Croatia
– Specialist in Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (sports injuries and rehabilitation) developing his job in a private clinic in Croatia
– MD, Phd, Senior Fellow of European Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, Senior Lecturer
– Team Medial Doctor of Croatian Ultramarathon Team
– Race Director of IAU 30th 100km ultramarathon World Championships held in 2018 in Croatia
– Author and co-author of couple of books on running (croatian editions)
– Ultramarathon, ironman triathlon and ultratriathlon recreational finisher


Date :
janvier 30
Heure :
1:00 - 2:00
Site Web :


CARLA Lab (Passcode Zoom: carlalab22)
E-mail :


Geopolis 4314