Drinking Motives and Alcohol Outcomes: The Moderating Effects of Group Cohesion Among College Athletes
Zandre Labuschagne, University of Missouri, USA
Theme: Exercise and health behaviors
Poster Number: 107
Program ID: POS-2
Presentation: October 4, 2013 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Research suggests intercollegiate athletes consume more alcohol than non-athletes (Nelson & Wechsler, 2001). Drinking motives have shown to be powerful predictors of alcohol-related outcomes among college athletes (Martens et al., 2006). However, less is known about how sport-specific variables moderate the relationship between drinking motives and alcohol outcomes. Group cohesion could moderate this relationship. It is possible that negatively reinforcing reasons for drinking, such as drinking for conformity purposes, will be a stronger predictor of alcohol use among those with higher levels of perceived group cohesion. The current research examined if two group cohesion variables, Attraction To Group (ATG) and Group Integration (GI), moderated the relationship between drinking motives and alcohol use/problems. Participants were 166 student-athletes (53% female, 87% White) from an NCAA Division I University in the Midwest. For males, GI significantly moderated the relationship between conformity motives and drinks per week (?R2 = .10, ?F (1, 61) = 7.27, p < .01). This relationship was stronger for those high in GI (? = .206) than those low in GI (? = -.504). Additionally, ATG significantly moderated the relationship between conformity motives and alcohol-related problems (?R2 = .05, ?F (1, 55) = 4.06, p < .05). This relationship was stronger for those low in ATG (? = .538) than those high in ATG (? = -.027). For females, ATG approached significance in moderating the relationship between coping motives and alcohol-related problems (?R2 = .021, ?F (1, 85) = 3.72). Although effects were positive for those low (? = .337) and high (? = .640) in ATG, the relationship was stronger for those high in ATG. Results emphasize the gender differences in sport-specific variables that may reduce the risk for alcohol use/problems among student-athletes. These findings may have important clinical implications for interventions targeting problematic drinking behaviors among college athletes.