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Jessica L. Martin, Matthew P. Martens, Holly F. Serrao and Tracey L. Rocha

Heavy alcohol consumption is a well-known health compromising addictive behavior. A lesser known addictive behavior that may cause physical and psychological harm is exercise dependence. Research has shown that heavy drinking co-occurs with other addictive behaviors, but until recently little was known about the co-occurrence of alcohol use and exercise dependence. The purpose of the current study was to examine this relationship and assess whether the co-occurrence could be accounted for by personality characteristics. Participants were 283 undergraduate students at a large, Northeastern university. All students reported consuming alcohol in the past 30 days and the majority (95.9%) reported exercising at least occasionally. Results indicated that alcohol use and alcohol-related problems co-occurred with exercise dependence and that personality characteristics did not fully account for the relationship. These findings have implications for clinicians and prevention specialists working with college students and provide several avenues for future research in an innovative area.

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Holly F. Serrao, Matthew P. Martens, Jessica L. Martin and Tracey L. Rocha

Large-scale, national research studies have consistently indicated that college students participating in athletics consume more alcohol than nonathletes. Theorists have speculated that a number of risk factors could be associated with heavy drinking among this group, although research in the area has been sparse. The purpose of the current study was to assess the relationship between one possible risk factor, competitiveness, in a sample of recreational and elite college athletes to determine whether competitiveness was related to alcohol use among these athletes. Data were collected from a sample of 298 undergraduates from a large university in the northeastern United States. Results showed that competitiveness was associated with higher amounts of alcohol consumption. Clinical implications and future research directions are discussed.