Study: Online Bodybuilding Forum Members Are Messed Up

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In a study titled “Body Perceptions and Health Behaviors in an Online Bodybuilding Community” researchers looked at the social reality of members of a bodybuilding forum.

They analyzed forum posts to discover the social constructions, body perceptions, and health experiences of the online membership.

This is from the abstract of the study:

Our results expose an extreme social reality held by a devoted muscle-building community with a fanatical obsession with muscular hypertrophy and any accoutrement helpful in its acquisition, from nutrition and supplements to training regimes and anabolic androgenic substances. Few health costs were considered too severe in this muscular meritocracy, where the strong commanded deference and the massive dominated the social field.

Translation: The forum members were obsessed with muscle-building to the point of ignoring health in the aim of extra muscular size.

So, the next time that you’re reading facebook, a forum, or blog comments, filter everything you read to make sure you’re not being influenced by a crazy person.

(As a side note, I’ve found that almost no one on any forum has anything useful to say, so I completely avoid them)

Here’s the study info:

Body Perceptions and Health Behaviors in an Online Bodybuilding Community. Smith, Stewart.
Qual Health Res July 2012 vol. 22 no. 7 971-985


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