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New Findings Offer Further
Understanding About Growth And Development In Young Male Gymnasts
Intense training has been found to delay the onset of puberty in
females by altering normal hormonal development. This has led to
delayed pubertal onset, delayed age at first menarche and failure to
develop mature skeletal structure. In males, despite evidence that
physical activity can also result in hormonal changes, there have
been few studies that examined the relationship between training and
the onset of puberty.
In gender wars, advocates for boys
Society's focus on the plight of girls has stirred a backlash from
boys' advocates. Drawing little media attention at first, their
arguments gained both statistical strength and often uneasy support
in a culture where gender inequities have long made Americans
defensive and edgy.
Program Reduces Eating Disorders In
A peer-led, sport team-centered program reduces eating disordered
behavior and body-shaping drug use in female high school athletes,
according to an article in the November issue of The Archives of
Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives
Source: American Medical Association,
Diet During Puberty Influences Sex Hormone
Levels, Possibly Breast Cancer Risk
A modest reduction in fat intake during puberty is associated with
changes in the levels of certain sex hormones, according to a study
of adolescent girls in the January 15, 2003 issue of the Journal of
the National Cancer Institute. In adults, elevated levels of sex
hormones are associated with an increase in breast cancer risk.
Source: Journal of the National Cancer
Energy Expenditure Differs By Race, Sex,
And Weight Among Louisiana School Children
The identification and treatment of overweight before the onset of
adolescence has important implications for health later in life,
because overweight during adolescence is an independent risk factor
for adult obesity and the adverse health effects that accompany it.
In a new study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, DeLany
et al. studied 131 preadolescent children and found that the
children's energy expenditures varied by their race, sex, and weight
and that each of these factors have an influence on whether a child
is or will become overweight.
Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,
High-Intensity Physical Training
Improves Cardiovascular Fitness In Obese Adolescents
After school lifestyle education and physical training programs can
benefit obese children and adolescents by altering their body
compositions and providing primary prevention of cardiovascular
Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,
Single-sex education works
Teenage boys and girls prefer being taught in single-sex classes,
work harder and perform better in examinations, according to the
outcome of a four-year study at a leading co-educational
comprehensive school. Boys said they could concentrate better without
the distraction of girls and both their confidence and their work
habits improved. Girls agreed, saying they felt less inhibited
without boys around. The study was carried out at Comberton Village
College in Cambridgeshire, which introduced single-sex lessons in
English in order to try and boost boys performance. After four
years, the gap between the sexes has narrowed to 4 per cent, compared
to a national average of 17 per cent.
Source: London Daily Telegraph
Have A Safe Prom Grant
Amica Insurance Company's "Save the Night" Program "Save the Night"
offers $1,000 grants for high schools that want to plan safe,
alcohol-free events for after prom or graduation. The grant can be
used to pay for the party, and winners also will receive a party
planning guide and anti drunk-driving posters. Applications must
include a student poem of 200 words or less illustrating why teens
should not drink and drive. Deadlines and contact information are
available by clicking here:
It's Not Fair
It's bad enough when dad insists you come home by 9:30... but it's
even worse when your kid brother gets to stay out until midnight!
Sibling double standards exist for many reasons. Here are some tips
to help you understand your parents' reasoning, and some suggestions
on how you can fight for your rights! Source:
Sexual Harassment at School
Sexual harassment can make you feel embarrassed and powerless. But
you're not helpless, and you don't have to take it. Find out more
about sexual harassment in schools and how you can fight it.
Asking Someone Out
It's not easy to ask people we're attracted to out on a date. We face
rejection and embarrassment. Get specific suggestions for getting to
know people you're attracted to and for finding out if they (and you)
are interested in a romantic relationship.
Slut...Just Another Four-Letter Word?
Want to know a quick and easy way to put a girl down and ruin her
reputation at the same time? Call her a slut. Theres a lot of
power packed into that tiny four-letter word. Its mean, nasty,
and we use it all the time.
Images of Teenagers in TV News
"What's the Matter with Kids Today?: Images of Teenagers on Local and
National News" is a report from a recent study of teens on television
news at the Center for Media and Public Affairs. In addition to an
excellent verbal report on the study, the following site has great
graphs to make the numbers come alive for teens as well as their
A Sure Recipe for
(1) A quarter of teenage boys, (2) A video
camera. (3) A January, 2001 episode of "Jackass" fresh in
their memory. The details are at www.thesmokinggun.com/doc_o_day/doc_o_day.shtml
Pain Relievers are Overused by High
High school football players may be putting themselves at risk
forserious kidney damage. According to results of a recent study,
most playerstake nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which
are available over the counter, as often as every day without
realizing that chronic use may cause serious gastrointestinal and
kidney damage. www.healthcentral.com/news/newsfulltext.cfm?ID=45835&src=n49
Juvenile Violence Hurts Young
Images of destructive teens are common on television and in the
movies. However, in reality, teens are far more likely to be the
victims rather than the perpetrators of violence, a new study
Virginity Pledges Work for 2.5
More than 2.5 million adolescents have taken part in public pledges
of abstinence until marriage, and study findings released Thursday
show that such promises are effective. www.healthcentral.com/news/newsfulltext.cfm?ID=46654&src=n43
Students who snooze morning away have
Forget using "all-nighter" study sessions to get better grades. A
recent survey of university students in Utah suggests that students
who habitually go to bed late and sleep in the next day get lower
grade point averages (GPAs) than students with early-to-bed and
early-to-rise sleeping habits. www.healthcentral.com/news/newsfulltext.cfm?ID=46456&src=n49
Speed boosts self-esteem for some male
Many reckless drivers, particularly young men, cannot be scared
straight. In fact, new research shows, scare tactics actually
encourage some drivers to speed, swerve, and otherwise show what they
can do behind the wheel.
For some young men, the self-image boost they get from
freewheeling down the road outweighs the risk of injury and death,
according to Israeli researchers. In a series of experiments with 695
young male drivers, the investigators found that showing the men a
film that graphically portrayed the consequences of unsafe driving
seemed to encourage some of them to drive recklessly.
Orit Taubman, of Bar-Ilan University in Ramat Gan, reports the
findings in the December issue of Current Directions in Psychological
Many drivers take risks on the road even though they know
accidents loom. According to Taubman, this behavior can be explained
by how much of a driver's self-worth rests in his or her driving
skills. In their research, he and his colleagues found that men who
related driving to their self-esteem tended to ignore the danger of
Taubman's team first questioned the men on the importance of
driving to their self-esteem. Next, some of the men were asked a
series of questions that forced them to ponder their own mortality.
Others watched a "threatening" video that showed them the
consequences of a car accident. Half of the men were not confronted
with death imagery. Afterward, all of the men had their tendency
toward reckless driving measured via a questionnaire or in a car
The studies revealed that the mortality reminders backfired among
men who related driving to their self-worth. The video, Taubman
notes, could have implied to the men that there is a social demand
for careful driving. Some men may uphold their self-worth by
resisting the social norm.
It may be time to reassess media campaigns that use "threats" to
make people change their behavior, according to Taubman.
"Eliciting fear of death," he writes, "may not necessarily be the
appropriate way to moderate or change risky attitudes and
This is in Time magazine concerning why girls are growing up
faster. Is it hormones? Is it fat? Is it something in the
water? How parents and kids are coping.
Teenage boys may feel out of place in
If healthcare agencies want to do a better job of reaching adolescent
males, they must be creative, according to a New York City physician
who spoke during the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals
Dr. Alwyn Cohall, a Columbia University public health and
pediatrics professor, explained young men are caught in a "gender
straightjacket" because they absorb the beliefs society gives them.
"Men should be stoic and independent and they should never admit
weakness," Cohall said. "They should wear a suit of armor."
Often, that prevents them from seeking help from medical
professionals when something goes wrong. "When they do come into the
healthcare setting, they may be embarrassed," Cohall stated. "They
may have a chip on their shoulder."
Other barriers that keep teenage boys out of health clinics
include peer pressure, a lack of insurance, and problems within the
clinical setting itself, he added.
To reach them, healthcare providers need to offer an environment
where young men will feel comfortable. Cohall shared a story about a
teen girl who wanted her boyfriend to learn how to help her insert a
diaphragm. When Cohall went to call the boyfriend into the exam room,
he was gone. "He had been told by the clinic staff men were not
welcome in the waiting area," Cohall recalled. "I found him waiting
outside on a bench."
Too often, doctors and nurses have their own bias about adolescent
males: boys won't wear condoms, teen fathers are irresponsible, and
young men try to talk girls out of using condoms. "Many healthcare
providers have not had the opportunity to work with adolescents and
learn to speak their language," Cohall noted.
In fact, a survey found 9 out of 10 adolescent male respondents
agreed it is important to talk about sex and use contraception. "They
want to be connected and they do care," Cohall said.
Again, the new Stance magazine takes a stance with the heading
"Scottish Surfers are Cool." talking about LungiMan's Surfkilt. No
Chain of Evidence
According to Black Men magazine, teenagers who drink or use
drugs are more likely than others to be sexually active, starting as
early as middle school and with a greater likelihood of multiple
partners, according to a new study released by the Center on
Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University. Condom use
among teens is erratic at best, and there is a fear that the
combination of substance abuse and sex could increase the 12 million
annual new cases of sexually transmitted diseases.
Boyz II Girlz: The vanishing American male
That's the cover of Chronicles: A magazine of American
culture. There are three articles: It's a Girl's, Girl's,
Girl's, Girl's World, Unisex Multiplex: When Felix met
Oscar and G.I. Jane: I love a gal in a uniform,
plus a commentary called Everything is Jake: The unmanned
American and a poem called The New Equality, are included
in this issue.
Stance is a
very interesting magazine. Directed to the teens/twenties, active
youth, it learns heavily on activities like surfing, skate and snow
boarding boarding. Got Milk advertises, plus a lot of pricey items
are talked about: $1,700 in-dash CD players, $370 watches, $1000
digital cameras, $700 cell phones and the like. The premiere issue
has several interesting things in it and this one,
"Roxy: Between a Roxy and a hard place" was about surfer women.
Yes, they were in skimpy wear - and that's what the young women wear.
Yes it said "Girls" and that culture refers to "girls" and "guys" and
hasn't gotten hung up on "women" and "men" - sounds to ancient. What
we really like was the way they talked about surfer women. To
quote: "We never thought we'd be saying it, but we like the word
"wholesome". Are we admitting to liking "wholesome"
girls? That's right...They capture everything that's hot
about girls without leaning toward being "dirty."...Made the Roxy
surfers synonymous with a Southern California definition of pretty
that needs no touching up, no makeup. It's anti-glamour...They're
unpretentious." We like that too. This is a far cry from
the messages that most teen and women's magazines are giving young
women - with loads of "Tricking/seducing your man" type articles and
promoting the need to wear a lot of make-up, to be pretentious In
fact, there is a whole magazine, 98 pages, called Britney
Spears doing just that. Thumbs up - we prefer your
Tweens: Are they growing up too
Newsweek carried a story on Tweens (Kids 8-14) and "What
Parents Can Do?" There was also a semi-related story titled "An
Expert on the 'Age of Obsession'." Worth checking out at your public
Special Report: School
Time magazine includes the following stories: How to Spot a
Troubled Kid. Depression: Do pills help or
hurt? How bad is the copycat problem. The tide
turns on guns. The case for smaller schools.
The Secret Lives of Teens
In the 3/99 issue of Life, real teenagers around the
country tell us their private thoughts on sex, drugs, parents and
more. Their answers may surprise and shock you.
* * *
American teenagers spend over $70 billion a year.
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