Project Advisor(s)

Dr. Daniel Corts

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Disciplines

Health Psychology

Description, Abstract, or Artist's Statement

Body image is how people think, feel and behave with regard to their own physical attributes (Muth and Cash, 1997). The ideal male body has gone from being very average during the 20th century to being almost unattainable in the 21st century. The turn of the century shows an ideal defined by hypermesomorphia, or an extremely muscular/sturdy body build. This pressure can be seen in studies that show that anywhere from 28% to 68% of “normal weight” adolescent boys and young men feel that they are underweight and want to gain muscle (McCreary and Sasse, 2000). The pressure to gain weight or muscle is defined by Galli and Reel as weight pressure in their 2009 study. This study explored the impacts that perceived body image and weight pressure have on male athletes. Twenty male athletes participated in this within subjects study. Each participant completed two sorting tasks (one of silhouettes and one of actual images) as well as the weight pressure in sport scale. The sorting tasks included individual pictures of the participants in order to observe the way that they view their own body, both when they are aware they are viewing their own body and when they are unaware that they are viewing their own body. My first hypothesis is that an individual will rank his body image higher when he does not know that it is his own. My second hypothesis is that individuals that score higher on the weight pressure scale will be more critical when judging their own bodies. Participants viewed their bodies as more desirable in the actual image condition than in the silhouette condition, t(20) = 2.042, p = 0.055, M = 0.900, SD = 1.97. The difference in the participants ratings were highly correlated, however not at a significant level, r = -0.381, p = 0.097. Contrary to my prediction, participants viewed their body as more desirable when they were aware of their body than when they did not. This may be in part due to a low number of participants, n = 20, as well as inconsistent photo alterations. This research provides insight for coaches and other athletic personnel at division-three colleges regarding the treatment of male athletes.

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Body Image in Division Three Male Athletes: An Assessment of the Effects of Weight Pressure and Body Ideals on Body Image

Body image is how people think, feel and behave with regard to their own physical attributes (Muth and Cash, 1997). The ideal male body has gone from being very average during the 20th century to being almost unattainable in the 21st century. The turn of the century shows an ideal defined by hypermesomorphia, or an extremely muscular/sturdy body build. This pressure can be seen in studies that show that anywhere from 28% to 68% of “normal weight” adolescent boys and young men feel that they are underweight and want to gain muscle (McCreary and Sasse, 2000). The pressure to gain weight or muscle is defined by Galli and Reel as weight pressure in their 2009 study. This study explored the impacts that perceived body image and weight pressure have on male athletes. Twenty male athletes participated in this within subjects study. Each participant completed two sorting tasks (one of silhouettes and one of actual images) as well as the weight pressure in sport scale. The sorting tasks included individual pictures of the participants in order to observe the way that they view their own body, both when they are aware they are viewing their own body and when they are unaware that they are viewing their own body. My first hypothesis is that an individual will rank his body image higher when he does not know that it is his own. My second hypothesis is that individuals that score higher on the weight pressure scale will be more critical when judging their own bodies. Participants viewed their bodies as more desirable in the actual image condition than in the silhouette condition, t(20) = 2.042, p = 0.055, M = 0.900, SD = 1.97. The difference in the participants ratings were highly correlated, however not at a significant level, r = -0.381, p = 0.097. Contrary to my prediction, participants viewed their body as more desirable when they were aware of their body than when they did not. This may be in part due to a low number of participants, n = 20, as well as inconsistent photo alterations. This research provides insight for coaches and other athletic personnel at division-three colleges regarding the treatment of male athletes.