ERIC Number: ED330926
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-May
Reference Count: 0
The Role of Sport/Fitness and Eating Disorders: Cosmetic Fitness from Starvation to Steroids.
Moriarty, Dick; And Others
The incidence of eating disorders is much higher among children and young adults involved in sport and fitness activities. When weight loss is followed by excessive exercise, certain biological and social reinforcers become evident. This is also followed by a diminished appetite, increased narcissistic investment in the body, and an elevated production of endorphins which enhances mood. A number of studies at the University of Windsor Sport Institute for Research/Change Agent Research (SIR/CAR) conducted throughout the 1970's and 1980's showed that when youth sports programs are professionalized, commercialized, and politicized, maladaptive behavior among participants was a probable outcome. Sport- and fitness-induced eating disorders, and steroid use are a form of iatrogenesis, or education and health profession induced illness. Parents, sport administrators, teachers, coaches, and fitness instructors do not cause, cannot control, and cannot cure eating disorders or drug abuse. They can nevertheless contribute, either positively or negatively, to the prevention of the problem or prognosis in this illness. They can contribute positively through identification, facing up to the problem, practicing tough love intervention techniques, providing a referral to a qualified health professional, and providing both the eating-disordered individual and themselves with alternative coping mechanisms and lifestyle behaviors. (LLL)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Canada; Eating Disorders; Steroids
Note: Paper presented at the International Congress on Youth, Leisure and Physical Activity (Brussels, Belgium, May, 1990).