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Sport participation can be very helpful to a young athlete in terms of developing self-esteem, self-efficacy, and sportsmanship. Unfortunately, it can also be a mechanism for the development of an eating disorder. Although unhealthy eating behaviors can sometimes be difficult to identify in the sport environment, recognizing unhealthy exercise can be even more complicated. In part, the difficulty results from the emphasis on rigorous training. Most coaches at the collegiate and elite levels believe that training is the single most important factor in enhancing athletic performance, and many believe that "more is better" regarding the frequency, duration, and intensity of training. Right or wrong, many of the current trends in sport, including those related to training, tend to filter down from the collegiate and elite levels to high school, middle school, and even younger levels of competition. ...
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