Academic journal article Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport

Alcohol Use by High School Athletes: Variation between Schools

Academic journal article Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport

Alcohol Use by High School Athletes: Variation between Schools

Article excerpt

Edgar W Shields, Jr., University of North Carolina--Chapel Hill

The National Household Survey on Drug Abuse reported an overall drop from 1997 to 1998 of illicit drug use for teens, although statistical changes for alcohol and tobacco were not encouraging. The secretary of Health and Human Services declared alcohol a serious problem, and the president of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse called for a national media campaign against alcohol and cigarettes. In a previous survey study of patterns of drug use by high school athletes 1988-96, this investigator found alcohol to clearly be the drug most frequently used in three categories: life-time experience (LTE), in-season use (IN-alc), and off-season use (OFF-alc). Current in-season and off-season use was defined a minimum of a few times per month. Random cluster sampling was employed, with each of 12 schools serving as a cluster. Athletes surveyed in 1988 totaled 1729, 1563 in 1996. The purpose of this study is to reexamine that data, focusing on the variability of drug use patterns from school to school . Overall, decreases were observed from 1988-1996 for LTE, IN-alc, and OFF-alc, ranging from 6 to 9 percentage points (p [less than] .001). Also, in 1988, IN-alc was 10% less than OFF-alc, 1996 IN-alc was 8% less than OFF-alc . …

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