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NCJ Number: 220472 Find in a Library
Title: Alcohol Use, Sexual Activity, and Perceived Risk in High School Athletes and Non-Athletes
Journal: Journal of Adolescent Health  Volume:41  Issue:3  Dated:September 2007  Pages:294-301
Author(s): Reagan R. Wetherill M.A.; Kim Fromme Ph.D.
Date Published: September 2007
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Health and Human Services
Rockville, MD 20892-9304
Grant Number: AA013967-02
Publisher: http://www.elsevier.com 
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The purpose of this study was to assess whether athletes begin to engage in more alcohol use and sexual activity before college, and if low perceived risk plays a role in the process, and whether perceptions of risk mediated the association between high school sports participation and alcohol use, and sports participation in sexual activity for young men and women.
Abstract: Findings indicate that athletes do, in fact, drink alcohol more frequently, consume more alcohol when they drink, engage in sex with more partners, and engage in unsafe sex more frequently than non-athletes during the last 3 months of their senior year in high school. Perceived risk mediated the association between high school sports participation and high school alcohol use. In separate analyses for sexual activity, perceived risk fully mediated the association between sports participation and number of sexual partners and partially mediated the association between sports participation and unsafe sex for women, and for men, perceived risk partially mediated the association between sports participation and number of sexual partners and unsafe sex. Results from this study provide evidence that high school athletes have lower perceived risk, drink more heavily, have more sexual partners, and engage in unsafe sexual behaviors more frequently than non-athletes. In addition, perceived risk mediated the associations between athlete status and alcohol use and between athlete status and number of sexual partners. Existing research literature suggests that athletes are a high-risk population for alcohol use and other risk behaviors. Previous research on sexual activity among athletes and non-athletes has yielded mixed feelings. This study examined one’s sense of personal invincibility as a contributing factor to high school athletes’ more frequent behavioral risks compared to those of non-athletes. Perceived risk was assessed as a mediator of sports participation and alcohol use, and sports participation and sexual activity among 2,247 high school athletes. Table, figures, references
Main Term(s): Risk taking behavior
Index Term(s): Adolescent chemical dependency; Adolescents at risk; Alcohol abuse; Alcoholic beverage consumption; Behavior patterns; High school education; Juvenile Delinquent behavior; Recreation; Sexual behavior; Underage Drinking; Youth development
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=242290

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