The prevalence of nutritional knowledge among soccer athletes within different levels of participant status
Nutrition knowledge of an athlete, as well as practice, is expected to influence an athlete’s performance. Dietary awareness plays an important role in implementing optimal nutrition practices. The purpose of this study is to assess the prevalence of nutritional knowledge of soccer athletes (n = 95; age 21 ± 1.742; years of involvement 9.72 ± 1.674) within difference level of participation (university vs club). Nutritional knowledge was assessed using a psychometrically validated and reliable questionnaire. Eighty-seven questions were used to assess the knowledge about nutrition which consist of 5 domains which are general nutrition, fluid, recovery, weight control and supplements. The questionnaire was given immediately before and after training. Repeated measure ANOVA revealed a significant difference in nutritional knowledge between university and club level athletes (p = 0.024) with a mean score of 0.461 ± 0.116 vs 0.404 ± 0.125, respectively. The nutrient and fluid domains shown were significantly higher in university with a mean score of 0.516 ± .097 for nutrient and 0.573 ± 0.159 for fluid, respectively. However, no significant difference in other nutritional domains (p < 0.05). The findings of the study provide evidence that they have a significant implication of university involvement concerning their nutritional knowledge.
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