Weight control practices, beliefs, self-efficacy, and eating behaviors in college weight class athletes

  • Lee, Ji Seon (Department of Food and Nutrition, Seoul Women's University) ;
  • Cho, Seong Suk (National Training Center of Korea Olympic Committee) ;
  • Kim, Kyung Won (Department of Food and Nutrition, Seoul Women's University)
  • Received : 2019.08.20
  • Accepted : 2019.10.14
  • Published : 2020.02.01


BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to examine differences in weight control practices, beliefs, self-efficacy, and eating behaviors of weight class athletes according to weight control level. SUBJECTS/METHODS: Subjects were weight class athletes from colleges in Gyeong-gi Province. Subjects (n = 182) responded to a questionnaire assessing study variables by self-report, and data on 151 athletes were used for statistical analysis. Subjects were categorized into High vs. Normal Weight Loss (HWL, NWL) groups depending on weight control level. Data were analyzed using t-test, ANCOVA, x2-test, and multiple logistic regressions. RESULTS: Seventy-three percent of subjects were in the HWL group. The two groups showed significant differences in weight control practices such as frequency (P < 0.01), duration and magnitude of weight loss, methods, and satisfaction with weight control (P < 0.001). Multiple logistic regression showed that self-efficacy (OR: 0.846, 95% CI: 0.730, 0.980), eating behaviors during training period (OR: 1.285, 95% CI: 1.112, 1.485), and eating behaviors during the weight control period (OR: 0.731, 95% CI: 0.620, 0.863) were associated with weight control level. Compared to NWL athletes, HWL athletes agreed more strongly on the disadvantages of rapid weight loss (P < 0.05 - P < 0.01), perceived less confidence in controlling overeating after matches (P < 0.001), and making weight within their weight class (P < 0.05). HWL athletes showed more inappropriate eating behaviors than NWL athletes, especially during the weight control period (P < 0.05 - P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Self-efficacy was lower and eating behaviors during pre-competition period were more inadequate in HWL athletes. Education programs should include strategies to help athletes apply appropriate methods for weight control, increase self-efficacy, and adopt desirable eating behaviors.


Supported by : Seoul Women's University


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