Gambling among university sport students: a preliminary analysis

Carwyn Jones, Harry Bowles, Daisie Mayes , Heidi Smith

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The aim of this study was to explore risks associated with the gambling habits and attitudes of sport students governed by betting integrity rules. Using focus groups and semi-structured interviews with male and female student rugby and football players and their coaches, we identified four areas of concern. First, participants considered gambling as a ‘normal’ pastime – a largely harmless form of communal entertainment. Second, we found that participants’ gambling behaviour was influenced by marketing strategies and by peers. Third, although participants were aware of some of the potential risks of gambling, they had a limited understanding of how problem gambling and addiction might develop. Taken together, we believe these encourage gambling and increase risks of gambling related problems. The fourth concern relates to breaking integrity rules. Although we found no evidence of intentional corrupt behaviour, participants had a casual attitude towards gambling regulations, and some broke the betting rules in ways they deemed trivial. Moreover, participants did not seem to take anticorruption education/intervention particularly seriously.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-102
JournalActa Universitatis Carolinae Kinanthropologica
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 14 Dec 2022


  • Gambling
  • Risk
  • Student-athletes
  • Integrity
  • Harm
  • Attitudes


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