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Final Research Paper

Final Research Paper - Alcohol and Athletes Running head...

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Alcohol and Athletes 1 Running head: COMPARISON BETWEEN ATHLETES AND ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION Comparison of Alcohol Consumption Among University Athletes and Non-Affiliated Athletes Eric P. Bronkhurst University of California-Irvine
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Alcohol and Athletes 2 Abstract In regards to athletes, particularly at the college level, heavy alcohol consumption is considered a great risk with many consequences. The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of alcohol on intercollegiate athletes and the differences between university affiliated and non-affiliated athletes. Data was collected on 14 athletes, both intercollegiate and of no affiliation, from the University of California Irvine campus and the surrounding area. Participant observation and interview was conducted. Results indicted that there are great differences between intercollegiate athletes and those unaffiliated with the school regarding patterns of consumption and stressors inducing episodic drinking. The results may be used to benefit further research in the area of sports medicine and the effects of alcohol on an athlete.
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Alcohol and Athletes 3 Comparison of Alcohol Consumption Among University Athletes and Non-Affiliated Athletes Alcohol and its extensive consumption among colleges and universities is considered a widely recognized problem in the United States. Recent studies show that 44% of college students today report episodic drinking in a matter of two weeks, which means consuming at least five drinks for males and four for females (Wechsler, Lee, Kuo & Lee, 2000). Among these students, a portion of them to be collegiate athletes, a behavior that poses a great threat to physical as well as the well being of these students. The importance of this project is to look at the differences in alcohol consumption, its effects and patterns, among intercollegiate athletes as well as those who are unaffiliated with the university. The question of whether alcohol may inhibit one’s athletic ability in anyway was considered a greater focus in the following research. A large problem in college athletic programs is the association with alcohol that follows from excessive partying that may hinder athletic performance and bring down an individual’s potential for success in that given sport. To be further informed, if there is any correlation to a decline in performance caused by alcohol consumption, whether it is immediate or long term, would be greatly beneficial to the community as a personal deterrent. The study will also examine whether episodic drinking not only affects collegiate athletes but individuals that exercise and try to lead healthy lives, or members of teams not affiliated with the university. By researching the psychological affects and patterns as well as the biological aspects, the study will incorporate these findings with observations to discover the differences between the two groups and distinguish whether alcohol may cause a decline in fitness and athletic ability. Another aspect the research will seek to target is the differentiation between these affects on both the collegiate athlete and one that is not of any particular collegiate obligation as stated earlier.
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