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© Borgis - New Medicine 2/2007, s. 22-26
*Wojciech Chalcarz, Aleksandra Musieł, Katarzyna Mucha
Assessment of anorectic behaviours among female judo athletes depending on anorexia readiness syndrome
Food and Nutrition Department of the Eugeniusz Piasecki
University School of Physical Education in Poznan
Head of the Department: Dr hab. Wojciech Chalcarz, prof. nadzw. AWF
Summary
Summary
The aim of this study was to compare anorectic behaviours among female judo athletes depending on the level of anorexia readiness syndrome (ARS).
A questionnaire survey concerning level of ARS was conducted among 72 female judo athletes aged from 13 to 22 years from 5 clubs located in Dolny Śląsk and Wielkopolska. The statistical analysis was carried out by means of the SPSS 11.5 PL for Windows computer program. The impact of ARS level on athletes´ answers was analysed.
The level of ARS significantly influenced 13 answers, with five answers each concerning forms of body weight control and reduction as well as perception of one´s own attractiveness, two answers concerning family´s style of upbringing and one answer concerning eating attitude.
Female judo athletes with high level of ARS were better educated than their colleagues with low and middle level of ARS. Most of them attended schools or classes with a sporting profile and characterized by long training periods. They paid special attention to forms of body weight control and reduction, eating attitude and perception of one´s own attractiveness. They did not feel accepted by their parents.
INTRODUCTION
Anorexia nervosa is one of the most dangerous diseases, due to its mortality rate, which stands at 18% and is the highest among all mental diseases [1, 2, 3, 4]. Its causes and origins are multifactorial [4, 5, 6, 7]. This illness is widespread not only among young girls and women, but among sportsmen as well, especially weight dependent sports such as tae kwon do, judo, karate, wrestling and rowing and aesthetic sports such as figure skating, rhythmic gymnastics, diving, synchronized swimming and dance [8, 9, 10, 11, 12]. To counteract anorexia nervosa the National Programme for Prevention and Treatment of Eating Disorders is proposed [5].
The factor that helps to distinguish people at risk of this disease is examining anorexia readiness syndrome (ARS) [13]. It is a set of symptoms implying a suspicion of abnormality in realizing food needs as well as in attitude to one´s own body. From the present literature it seems that this possibility is not used to assess anorexia risk among athletes.
The aim of this work was to compare anorectic behaviours among female judo athletes depending on the level of anorexia readiness syndrome (ARS).
MATERIAL AND METHOD
A questionnaire survey concerning level of ARS was conducted among 72 female judo athletes aged from 13 to 22 years from five clubs located in Dolny Śląsk and Wielkopolska. An individual eating and body attitude questionnaire formulated by Ziółkowska [13] was used to carry out the survey. It includes questions concerning forms of body weight control and reduction, eating attitude, family´s style of upbringing and perception of one´s own attractiveness. The questionnaire was extended with questions characterizing the surveyed group. Persons taking part in the survey were notified about their freedom of choice to fill in the form as well as the possibility to opt out of taking part in this survey.
The level of anorexia readiness syndrome (ARS) was assessed on the basis of the sum of points gained from answers to questions in an individual eating and body attitude questionnaire. Surveyed persons could obtain a maximum of 20 points. A score from 0 to 6 points indicated a low level of ARS, a score from 7 to 13 points indicated a middle level of ARS, and a score from 14 to 20 points indicated a high level of ARS [14].
The statistical analysis was carried out by means of the SPSS 11.5 PL for Windows computer program. The impact of ARS level on athletes´ answers was analysed.
The written permission of the Regional Committee for Ethics of Research by the University of Medical Science in Poznan was obtained.
RESULTS
1. Characteristics of surveyed group of people depending on the level of ARS
Characteristics of the surveyed group of female judo athletes depending on the level of ARS are presented in Table 1. The level of ARS significantly influenced the type of school, school´s or class´s profile and years of training. Athletes with high level of ARS were better educated than their colleagues with low or middle level of ARS; 75.0% of them attended schools or classes with a sporting profile and characterized by the longest training periods.
Table 1. Characteristic of surveyed group of female judo athletes depending on the level of ARS. Results are given in [%].
NrFactorDivisionLevel of ARS
Low [N=21]Middle [N=47]High [N=4]
1.Age11-15 years
16-20 years
21-25 years
57.1
38.1
4.8
55.3
42.6
2.1
0.0
50.0
50.0
2.Type of schoolPrimary School
Secondary School
High School
College
4.8
71.4
9.5
14.3
8.5
70.2
14.9
6.4
0.0
25.0
25.0
50.0
3.School´s/class´s profileGeneral
Sport
76.2
23.8
83.0
17.0
25.0
75.0
4.Mother´s educationPrimary
Vocational
Secondary
University
0.0
14.3
57.1
28.6
6.4
23.4
51.1
19.1
0.0
50.0
50.0
0.0
5.Father´s educationPrimary
Vocational
Secondary
University
0.0
9.5
52.4
38.1
10.6
12.8
51.1
25.5
0.0
50.0
50.0
0.0
6.SiblingsYes
No
95.2
4.8
97.9
2.1
100.0
0.0
7.Number of brothers or sistersNone
One
Two
Three
Four
Five
4.8
61.9
14.3
4.8
14.3
0.0
2.1
53.2
29.8
12.8
2.1
0.0
0.0
50.0
25.0
0.0
0.0
25.0
8.Order of surveyed person among siblingsFirst
Second
Third
Fourth
Fith
20.0
60.0
5.0
5.0
5.0
34.0
44.7
17.0
4.3
0.0
75.0
25.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
9.Years of trainingTo 1 year
From 1 year to 3 years
From 3 years to 5 years
More than 5 years
9.5
23.8
23.8
42.9
12.8
36.2
27.7
23.4
0.0
0.0
25.0
75.0
10.Hours of training during weekTo 3 hours
3 to 6 hours
6 to 9 hours
More than 9 hours
14.3
38.1
47.6
0.0
6.4
53.2
21.3
19.1
25.0
0.0
75.0
0.0
11.Sport achievementsYes
No
90.5
9.5
89.4
10.6
100.0
0.0
Bold italics type denotes statistically significant results (pŁ0,05).
Although the level of ARS did not significantly influence the remaining questions it was distinctive that female judo competitors with a high level of ARS were aged from 16 to 20 years, and from 21 to 25, with 50.0% for each. Their mothers and fathers graduated either from vocational or from secondary school. All of them had siblings and 75.0% of them were the first child in the family. 75.0% of judo athletes with high level of ARS had been training from 6 to 9 hours a week and all of them had achievements in sport.
2. Form of body weight control and reduction

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Adres do korespondencji:
*Wojciech Chalcarz
Department of Food and Nutrition, University School of Physical Education,
61-555 Poznań/Poland, Str. Droga Dębińska 7
tel. +48 61 835 52 87
e-mail: chalcarz@awf.poznan.pl

New Medicine 2/2007
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