Just Don’t Do It: High School Sports Participation and Young Female Adult Sexual Behavior

in Sociology of Sport Journal
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Recent research has explored the relationship between sports participation in high school and the sexual and reproductive behavior of females. Evidence has accumulated that playing sports is associated with a lowered risk of pregnancy among adolescents and positively associated with the use of contraceptives, but little evidence has been uncovered as to whether such associations endure into young adulthood. Using data from a representative community sample, we examined whether differences in high school sports participation has an association with the sexual and reproductive activities of young adult women after high school (n = 679). Results of multivariate analyses suggest that high school sports involvement is a predictor of the likelihood of childbirth outside of marriage and lifetime number of sex partners but is not a predictor of condom use during sex.

T.M. Eitle is with the Department of Sociology, University of Miami, Miami, FL; and D.J. Eitle is with the Department of Criminal Justice, Florida International University, Miami, FL.

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