Development of A Theory-based Instrument Regarding Adolescent Athletes and Dietary Supplements

Perko, Michael A.
March 1999
American Journal of Health Studies;1999, Vol. 15 Issue 2, p71
Academic Journal
Abstract: Development of a Theory-based Instrument Regarding Adolescent Athletes and Dietary Supplements: Dietary supplement use is a well-documented practice among adult and adolescent athletes. Most recently the popular press was as interested in professional baseball player Mark McGwire's use of the dietary supplement Androstenedione as they were in his record-breaking homerun season. As a whole, athletes continue to use dietary supplements at a rate higher than the general population. Among athletes, adolescent's are a key target market of the dietary supplement industry. Claims of increased energy, improved performance, and gains in muscular strength appeal to this population. However, time and again the efficacy of these claims has been shown to be unsupported under scientific scrutiny. The purpose of this article will be to discuss the development of an instrument based on the Theory of Reasoned Action to assess intentions, attitudes, and beliefs of adolescent athletes regarding dietary supplements. A nine-stage model was used in the development of the instrument, titled the Survey to Predict Adolescent Athletes Dietary Supplement Use (SPAADSU). This model yielded a final form of the SPAADSU containing 36 items. Cronbach's alpha was 9409. It was concluded that the SPAADSU is a reliable instrument that can be used to assess behavioral intentions, attitudes, and beliefs of adolescent athletes regarding dietary supplements. It is felt that a valid and reliable instrument such as the SPAADSU will greatly benefit those groups of individuals who are responsible for the well-being of adolescent athletes; most specifically, but not limited to, coaches, athletic trainers, physicians, health educators, and parents/guardians. [Am J Health Studies 2999; 15(2): 71-80]


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