|Authors||Kavussanu, M., Hurst, P., Barkoukis, V., Skoufa, L., King, A. and Ring, C.|
The main objective of this study was to develop and evaluate an anti-doping intervention aiming to reduce athletes’ intentions to dope by targeting their moral disengagement, anticipated guilt, and self-regulatory efficacy. Design: 2 Group (Psychological, Educational) x 2 Time (Pre, Post) Experimental design, with a two-month follow up.
Athletes (N= 206) from individual and team sports, recruited from Greece and UK, were randomly assigned to either a psychological (n= 95) or an educational intervention (n= 112). The psychological intervention focused on challenging moral disengagement mechanisms, accentuating anticipated guilt and strengthening self-regulatory efficacy to resist doping. The educational intervention included information about anti-doping rules and regulations, health consequences of banned substances, sport supplements, and healthy nutrition. Both interventions consisted of six, one-hour sessions. Athletes completed questionnaires about doping intention, moral disengagement, selfregulatory efficacy, and guilt pre and post intervention, and two months after the end of the intervention.
Analysis showed a decrease in doping intention and moral disengagement from pre to post test for both the psychological and the educational intervention. Self-regulatory efficacy increased for those participants taking part in the educational but not those taking part in the psychological intervention.
Our findings suggest that our anti-doping interventions can be effective in reducing doping intentions. The findings have significant implications for anti-doping and can inform both policy and practice.