Knowledge and Attitudes of University Female Athletes about the Female Athlete Triad

James D. Ramsay, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Daytona Beach


Since the Female Athlete Triad was published in 1992, many efforts have been made to alert the athletic community about the relationship which is shared by disordered eating, amenorrhea and osteoporosis. The knowledge of athletes was investigated at three Midwestern universities regarding the female athlete triad. A total of 189 athletes from two Division III institutions and one Division I institution participated. Overall the subjects had normal height, weight, and body mass index. Most athletes knew they were at risk for osteoporosis at their age, however they did not understand the association it had with amenorrhea. At the Division I school, subjects (a) reported more stress fractures, (b) was the only school to report no history of eating disorders and (c) was the school with the highest percentage of athletes that had been told losing weight will increase performance. Getting the message out about the triad is imperative especially to the athletes so they will be in a better position not to become complacent and begin poor health practices.