Social validation: a motivational theory of doping in an online bodybuilding community

Hutchinson, Brendan, Moston, Stephen, and Engelberg, Terry (2017) Social validation: a motivational theory of doping in an online bodybuilding community. Sport in Society. (In Press)

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Abstract

Doping research has predominantly been framed through an ethical lens, implicitly restricted to the realms of elite sport. Despite increasing anecdotal evidence of growing prevalence rates amongst recreational athletes, such as bodybuilders, these populations have largely been neglected within psychological research. This study aims to develop a theoretical framework relevant to these athletes. Data were collected over a five-month period from an online community forum dedicated to recreational bodybuilders. Purposive sampling was used to gather 118 webpages of doping-related discussion, which were qualitatively analysed using grounded theory applying Strauss's coding paradigm. Inductive categories were integrated into a motivational framework that related recreational doping to social validation. Categories included the online community's rite of passage, normative-inferences that facilitated doping, and deterrence factors related to fear of perceived health risks. Findings demonstrate that, for recreational bodybuilders, psychosocial processes are significantly related to doping motives, and that health factors are primary doping deterrents.

Item ID: 41295
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: doping; social validation; bodybuilding; WADA; sport
ISSN: 1743-0445
Date Deposited: 22 Jan 2016 01:48
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170114 Sport and Exercise Psychology @ 50%
17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology @ 30%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110604 Sports Medicine @ 20%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950103 Recreation @ 50%
95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950102 Organised Sports @ 50%
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