Adaptation and destabilization of interpersonal relationships in sport and music during the Covid-19 lockdown

Roberta Antonini Philippe*, Andrea Schiavio, Michele Biasutti

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting imposition of physical distancing rules had consequences in the domains of music and sport. The present study sought to analyze how the COVID-19 lockdown period affected interpersonal relationships between music teachers and students and sports coaches and athletes. As part of a semi-structured interview, eighteen participants—six athletes and their three coaches and six musicians and their three teachers—were asked to recall how their interpersonal relationships evolved during the lockdown. Findings showed that these changes could be grouped into four dimensions: establishing a new relationship; working on a new form for the relationship; developing functional, positive adaptations; and developing non-adaptive, detached relationships. Findings also showed that members of the dyad gave meaning to their interpersonal relationship in a dynamic way, even over such a short time. There were some similarities between the experiences of musicians and athletes, highlighting the importance of a well-functioning dyad and good communication between the parties.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere05212
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 14 Oct 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Author(s)


  • COVID-19
  • Interpersonal relationship
  • Music
  • Online learning
  • Psychology
  • Social science
  • Sport

Cite this