Objectives: We assessed the association between hours/week of sports participation and psychosocial outcomes among high school athletes. We hypothesized that more hours of participation would be associated with lower levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms.
Methods: Participants completed the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Pediatric Profile 25 Quality of Life (QoL) and other questionnaires to assess sports participation, socioeconomic status, and health history. We evaluated the multivariable relationship between hours/week in sport and PROMIS scores while adjusting for the independent effect of age and varsity team status.
Results: A total of 230 high school athletes participated in this study (mean=15.4±1.2 years of age). More hours/week playing sports was significantly associated with lower levels of depressive symptoms (coefficient=-0.073, 95% CI= -0.137, -0.010; p=0.02). Sports participation was not significantly associated with any other psychosocial domain scores on the PROMIS questionnaire.
Conclusion: More hours of sports participation was significantly associated with lower depressive symptoms, but no other psychosocial domain. While our findings are cross-sectional, sport participation may play a role in attenuating symptoms of depression in high school athletes.
Relevance for patients: Sports participation may play a beneficial role in lessening depressive symptoms among healthy high school students.
Sports Medicine Center, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Aurora, CO, USA
David R. Howell Sports Medicine Center, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Aurora, CO, 13123 East 16th Street, Box 060, 80045, USA
Department of Pharmaceutics, Utrecht University, the Netherlands
Department of Pharmaceutics, Jiaxing University Medical College, Zhejiang, China