In recent years muscle dysmorphia has attracted the interests of sport, exercise, and clinical psychologists, researchers, and the popular media. In this article we review muscle dysmorphia literature and propose a framework to advance knowledge about the condition's development and sustainment. Existing research is focused on social variables correlated with muscle dysmorphia (e.g., social support), and cognitions, emotions, and behaviours displayed by individuals with the condition (e.g., exercise dependence and steroid abuse). The proposed framework draws on the extant body image and body dysmorphic disorder literature to address gaps identified in current muscle dysmorphia knowledge. In particular, little attention has been given to mechanisms by which the condition develops and is sustained, and learning theory is proposed as one possibility. In addition to extending muscle dysmorphia knowledge, the framework is offered as a way to stimulate a range of investigations adding to current understanding. The inclusion of learning theory, for example, may provide insights leading to the identification of suitable treatments for people whose health and well-being has been reduced as a result of experiencing muscle dysmorphia.
|Number of pages||21|
|Journal||International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Sep 2010|
- Muscle dysmorphia
- Body image
- Body dysmorphic disorder