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Beliefs About the Causes of Success in Sports and Susceptibility for Doping Use in Adolescent Athletes

The present study set out to assess the impact of attributional beliefs about success on the susceptibility for doping use in adolescent athletes. The sample consisted of 309 adolescent athletes participating in both team and individual sports. Participants completed a battery of questionnaires including Beliefs about the Causes of Success in Sport Questionnaire (BACSSQ), current and past doping use, and measures of attitudes, norms, situational temptation and social desirability. Variance reduction rate analysis revealed that social desirability did not act as a confounder in the relationship between doping susceptibility and its predictors. With regard to beliefs about the causes of success dimensions, only deception emerged as a significant predictor of doping use susceptibility over and above the effects of well-established social-cognitive predictors of doping intentions and use. These findings imply that beliefs about the causes of success in youth sports may comprise another dimension of risk factors for doping susceptibility and use.