Retiring is difficult for everyone. It takes on a different meaning for professional athletes though. For years, their job kept them in the public eye. It required them to keep their body in tip-top condition. Their sport and their fitness was their life. The situation can be even harder for professional athletes who were forced to retire because of an injury or decline in performance.
Retiring professional athletes struggle with depression, lack of purpose, and joblessness. They need to learn how to become fully developed individuals who have an identity outside of their sport life. This is because most athletes come into success and fame when they are relatively young. Success comes when they are forming their personality. When this identity is gone, athletes can suffer a loss of meaning in their life and a loss of self-worth.