Factors That Interfere With Sport Performance and Alcohol Use Among Collegiate Athletes
Emma Diaz, University of Nevada Las Vegas, USA
Theme: Clinical issues
Poster Number: 5
Program ID: POS-1
Presentation: October 3, 2013 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Student athletes report more alcohol consumption, frequent binge drinking, and negative alcohol-related consequences than student non-athletes (Martens, Dams-O’Connor, & Beck, 2006), and freshman athletes may be particularly at-risk. Demographic factors may contribute to high-risk drinking (Martens, Watson, & Beck, 2006). The purpose of this study was to assess the extent of alcohol use in freshman athletes, and examine the relationship between alcohol use and mental health-related factors that interfere with sport performance. Participants were 64 intercollegiate freshman athletes (Male = 32, Female = 32) from nine sports. Age of athletes ranged from 18-23 years (M = 18.77, SD = 1.15). Participants completed a demographic form, two questions about alcohol consumption during the past two months, the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT: Babor, Higgins-Biddle, Saunders, & Monteiro, 2001), and the Sport Interference Checklist (SIC: Donohue, Silver, Dickens, Covassin, & Lancer, 2007). The AUDIT assesses symptoms consistent with alcohol consumption, abuse, dependence, and alcohol-related consequences. Higher AUDIT Total Scores corresponds to increased risk of alcohol-related problems. The SIC measures a wide range of cognitive and behavioral problems experienced by athletes in training and competition. Results showed that during the past two months, 57.8% of freshman athletes consumed alcohol at least one day and 35.9% engaged in binge drinking (i.e., six or more drinks on one occasion). Based on the AUDIT results, 84.4% of athletes were categorized as “low risk” drinkers, while 15.6% of athletes were categorized as “moderate high risk” drinkers. Multiple regression analyses were used to examine the relationship between the SIC (Training and Competition) and AUDIT. Results revealed that the SIC Training subscales and gender explained 13.3% of the variance in alcohol consumption. Athletes who evidenced more dysfunctional thoughts and stress during training reported higher alcohol consumption, whereas athletes who experienced poorer team relationships during training consumed less alcohol.