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Health and Wellbeing

The Mum-Alete Project

Exploring high-performance athletes’ perceptions and experiences of sport participation during and post-pregnancy.

An Australian first, this study is being conducted by AIS Medicine in collaboration with the AIS Female Health Performance Initiative, to enhance our understanding of high performance athletes’ sport experiences during and post-pregnancy.

This world-leading study will explore the athlete experience to assess:

  • The impact of pregnancy on continuing sport
    (e.g. physical health, mental health, financial and social)
  • Post-pregnancy impact on return to sport
    (e.g. physical health, mental health, financial and social)
  • The actual and perceived facilitators and barriers during and post-pregnancy

By identifying the physical health, mental health, financial and social impacts that pregnancy and post-pregnancy have on an athlete’s decision to remain in or return to sport, the Mum-Alete study aims to:

  • Help attract and retain women in the high performance system
  • Shape current and future AIS initiatives
  • Influence change to better support and improve longevity of a female athlete

Important information:

Eligible athletes who would like to participate can anonymously complete the online survey which will take approximately 20-25 minutes to complete.

The survey is open from 13 November 2021 - 13 February 2022.

Start survey

Eligibility Criteria

  • an Australian female athlete training or competing at a State or Territory, National or International level in the six months prior to pregnancy.
    • OR
  • a professional athlete, you must be competing at the highest Domestic or International level in the six months prior to pregnancy.
    • AND
  • 18 years or older
  • currently pregnant and/or have given birth since 1 July 2016

You cannot take part in this study if you are

  • under 18 years of age
  • only training or competing at a local or recreational level
  • gave birth prior to 1 July 2016
    • OR
  • currently not pregnant

Eligible athletes who would like to participate can anonymously complete the online survey which will take approximately 20-25 minutes to complete. For further information on the aims of the study and process of data collection and analysis please read the Participant Information Sheet and Informed Consent details (links below).

Research Team

  • Dr Victoria Forsdick (AIS Medicine)
  • Dr Nirmala Panagodage Perera (AIS Medicine)
  • Dr Richard Saw (AIS Medicine)
  • Dr Rachel Harris OLY (AIS Female Health Performance Initiative)
  • Dr Melanie Hayman (Central Queensland University)
  • Ms Hannah Buckling OLY (AIS Female Health Performance Initiative, Waterpolo Australia)
  • Professor Jorunn Sundgot-Borgen (The Norwegian School of Sports Sciences)
  • Dr David Hughes (AIS Medicine)

Contact

Dr Victoria Forsdick, Lead Researcher, AIS Medicine
Victoria.forsdick@ausport.gov.au

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