Bone mineral density in college female athletes and non-athletes
Maust, Claire Victoria
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The purpose of this study was to determine how sports participation during three college years affects areal bone mineral density (aBMD) in female artistic gymnasts (GYM; N=37), cross-country runners (RUN; N=28), and non-athlete controls (CON; N=69). Body composition and total hip, femoral neck, trochanter, and lumbar spine bone measurements of GYM, RUN, and CON were determined using dual X-ray absorptiometry. Using SAS software, data were analyzed using linear models and fixed effects were performed using ordinary least squares linear regression. Total hip and femoral neck aBMD significantly declined in CON, but not in GYM or RUN (p<0.0001). Trochanter aBMD declined significantly (p<0.0001) in all groups. GYM but not RUN or CON lumbar spine aBMD increased significantly (p<0.05). These results suggest that participation in weight-bearing sports during the collegiate years has a beneficial and/or protective effect on total hip, femoral neck and lumbar spine aBMD, but not necessarily the trochanter.