Views: 0 Author: Site Editor Publish Time: 2023-04-29 Origin: Site
Research suggests that disapproval from peers and parents can deter high school athletes from using steroid powders, making them valuable partners in prevention efforts. However, teaching students only about the adverse effects of steroids is not enough to convince them of the negative consequences or deter them from using steroid powders in the future. Presenting both the risks and benefits of steroid use is more effective in convincing adolescents about the negative effects of steroids because it presents a more balanced approach.
Research also shows that some adolescents misuse steroid powders as part of a pattern of high-risk behaviors, such as drinking and driving, carrying a gun, riding a motorcycle without a helmet, and using other illicit drugs. This suggests that a prevention program should focus on comprehensive screening and counseling among teens who use anabolic steroids.
The Adolescents Training and Learning to Avoid Steroids (ATLAS) program has shown promise in preventing steroid misuse among high school football players. By educating student athletes about the harmful effects of steroids and providing nutrition and weight-training alternatives to steroid use, the program has increased healthy behaviors and reduced intentions to misuse steroid powders. Coaches and team leaders teach about the harmful effects of steroids and other drugs on sports performance and how to refuse offers of drugs.
Studies show that one year after completing the program, compared to a control group, ATLAS-trained football players had:
less use of anabolic steroid powders and less intention to misuse them in the future
less misuse of alcohol, amphetamines, and narcotics
less misuse of "athletic enhancing" supplements
less likelihood of engaging in hazardous behaviors, such as drinking and driving
better knowledge of steroid, alcohol, and marijuana effects; knowledge of alternatives to steroid powders use; greater confidence in athletic abilities; and improved nutritional behaviors.
The Athletes Targeting Healthy Exercise and Nutrition Alternatives (ATHENA) program, designed for adolescent girls on sports teams, has also shown success in decreasing risky behaviors and substance use. Although the program had no immediate effect on tobacco, alcohol, or marijuana use, ATHENA-trained athletes reported less lifetime use of these substances when surveyed one to three years following high school graduation.