Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Management in Collegiate Athletes: A Critically Appraised Topic
Jennifer Savage, Kinesiology; Christopher Clark, Kinesiology
10:00-10:10am | Houston Cole Library, 11th Floor
Context: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is defined by impairing behavior patterns that result in abnormal levels of inattention, hyperactivity, and/or impulsivity. ADHD can be diagnosed by a licensed psychiatrist or other healthcare professionals. This disorder is common among all populations; however, this research is primarily focused on collegiate athletes. The purpose of this critically appraised topic is to compare the effectiveness of physical exercise and prescription medication for the management of ADHD symptoms in collegiate athletes.
Methods: A computerized search was conducted in October 2022. The search terms were “ADHD or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder,” “ADHD in collegiate athletes,” “behavioral intervention,” “aerobic exercise,” “medication,” and “NCAA.” Electronic databases used were Jacksonville State University Library, SPORTDiscus, ScienceDirect, MEDLINE, and ProQuest. Inclusion criteria: Literature that was published in the English Language, contained ADHD, physical activity and/or medication, and collegiate athletes. Exclusion criteria: Studies regarding autism, anxiety, and concussions were excluded. Validity of the selected studies were determined using the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) Scale, Scale for the Assessment of Narrative Review Articles (SANRA), and the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) checklist. One author independently reviewed the studies, scored each paper, and reviewed the completed appraisals to come to a consensus on study quality.
Results: The literature search retrieved nine total articles, but four were excluded based on exclusion criteria, resulting in five articles. ADHD symptoms are typically regulated using prescribed medication such as Adderall, Vyvanse, and Strattera. Aerobic exercise such as swimming, running, and high intensity interval training can reduce short-term and long-term symptoms of ADHD. It is safe for collegiate athletes to use medication and/or aerobic exercise to regulate ADHD symptoms.
Conclusion: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder that effects individuals differently. Additional research is needed to understand how ADHD affects collegiate athletes and how to manage the disorder while participating in sports. Both physical exercise and prescription medication can be utilized to manage symptoms of ADHD.
student research, kinesiology
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Ingram, Tamicha, "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Management in Collegiate Athletes: A Critically Appraised Topic" (2023). JSU Student Symposium 2023. 68.