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Empathic and Self-Regulatory Processes Governing Doping Behavior

Boardley, ID and Smith, AL and Mills, JP and Grix, J and Wynne, C (2017) 'Empathic and Self-Regulatory Processes Governing Doping Behavior.' Frontiers in Psychology, 8. ISSN 1664-1078

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Abstract

Evidence associating doping behavior with Moral Disengagement (MD) has accumulated over recent years. However, to date, research examining links between MD and doping has not considered key theoretically-grounded influences and outcomes of MD. As such, there is a need for quantitative research in relevant populations that purposefully examines the explanatory pathways through which MD is thought to operate. Towards this end, the current study examined a conceptually-grounded model of doping behavior that incorporated empathy, doping self-regulatory efficacy (SRE), doping MD, anticipated guilt and self-reported doping/doping susceptibility. Participants were specifically recruited to represent four key physical-activity contexts and consisted of team- (n = 195) and individual- (n = 169) sport athletes and hardcore- (n = 125) and corporate- (n = 121) gym exercisers representing both genders (nmale = 371; nfemale = 239); self-reported lifetime prevalence of doping across the sample was 13.6%. Each participant completed questionnaires assessing the aforementioned variables. Structural equation modelling indicated strong support for all study hypotheses. Specifically, we established: (a) empathy and doping SRE negatively predicted reported doping; (b) the predictive effects of empathy and doping SRE on reported doping were mediated by doping MD and anticipated guilt; (c) doping MD positively predicted reported doping; (d) the predictive effects of doping MD on reported doping were partially mediated by anticipated guilt. Substituting self-reported doping for doping susceptibility, multisample analyses then demonstrated these predictive effects were largely invariant between males and females and across the four physical-activity contexts represented. These findings extend current knowledge on a number of levels, and in doing so aid our understanding of key psychosocial processes that may govern doping behavior across key physical-activity contexts.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Performance enhancing drugs, Moral disengagement, Self-regulatory efficacy, Empathy, Mediation, Multisample analyses, Sport, Exercise
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Sport, Rehabilitation and Exercise Sciences, School of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2017 15:13
Last Modified: 12 Sep 2018 19:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/20211

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