The Effect of Psychological Stress, Training Load, and Energy Availability on the Prevalence of Athletic Amenorrhea in NCAA Division I and Division III Distance Runners Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Babcock, Deanna
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Exercise and Sport Science
  • This study quantified the prevalence of athletic amenorrhea in division (D) I and DIII distance runners and examined relationships between training load, energy availability, psychological stress, and amenorrhea. Participants (n=98) completed surveys assessing menstrual history, energy availability, psychological stress, and training load. The prevalence of amenorrhea was 20% and did not differ between divisions. Of all training parameters, only running mileage differed between divisions; DI athletes reported greater mileage (p<0.0005). There was a positive association between mileage and amenorrhea (p=0.045). Division I athletes reported greater running (p<0.0005) and overall (p=0.005) energy expenditure than DIII athletes. Energy availability did not differ between divisions and was not predictive of amenorrhea. Psychological stress did not differ between divisions, though was predictive of amenorrhea; increased psychological stress reduced the risk of amenorrhea (p=0.040). In conclusion, the prevalence of amenorrhea did not differ between divisions; only running mileage and psychological stress were predictive of amenorrhea.
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  • In Copyright
  • Hackney, Anthony
  • Master of Arts
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2012

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