Body dissatisfaction in women's artistic gymnastics: A longitudinal study of psychosocial indicators

Clara Mockdece Neves*, Juliana Fernandes Filgueiras Meireles, Pedro Henrique Berbert de Carvalho, Astrid Schubring, Natalie Barker-Ruchti, Maria Elisa Caputo Ferreira

*Corresponding author for this work

Publication: Contribution to journalJournal articlesResearchpeer-review


Body dissatisfaction is prevalent in women’s artistic gymnastics (WAG). Cross-sectional research points to social and individual risk factors, however it does not account for potential changes in body dissatisfaction during an athletic season. This study aimed to determine how gymnasts’ body dissatisfaction, risk factors for eating disorders, media internalisation, perfectionism and mood state change during pre-competition, competition and post-competition seasons and to identify how these psychosocial indicators impact on body dissatisfaction during the athletic year. The sample consisted of 20 Brazilian elite women’s artistic gymnasts aged 10–16 years. Data were obtained from a 9-month study using: Body Shape Questionnaire (BSQ); Eating Attitude Test-26; Sociocultural Attitudes Towards Appearance Questionnaire-3 (SATAQ-3); Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale (MPS); Brunel Mood Scale (BRUMS) and triceps and subscapular skinfolds. Body dissatisfaction was higher during the competition season and disordered eating, perfectionism and vigour values were higher in the pre-competition season. Disordered eating has been found as the strongest predictor of body dissatisfaction during all seasons, and mood state partly contributed to body dissatisfaction in the competitive season. Stakeholders should understand that body dissatisfaction and the prevalence of disordered eating may change over time.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Issue number17
Pages (from-to)1745-1751
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Research areas and keywords

  • Adipose Tissue
  • Adolescent
  • Affect
  • Body Image
  • Child
  • Competitive Behavior
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders/psychology
  • Female
  • Gymnastics/psychology
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Perfectionism
  • Risk Factors
  • Social Media


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