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A qualitative study of the perceived impact of a community mobilisation intervention to reduce alcohol consumption among amateur sportsmen

  • C. D. Darker (a1), J.-H. Ivers (a1), A. O'Farrell (a1) (a2), R. Dolan (a3), N. Eldin (a4) and S. P. A. Allwright (a1)...

The aim of this study was to examine the perceived impact of a community mobilisation intervention programme to reduce alcohol consumption among amateur sportsmen aged 16–34 years.


A qualitative focus group format was used to identify potentially important themes or concepts relating to players’ and coaches’ experiences of the intervention. Six focus groups were conducted (five with four to seven players per focus group and one with six coaches) to elicit participants’ experiences of the intervention.


Three major themes emerged from the analyses: patterns of alcohol consumption and associated factors; perceived impact of the intervention; and suggested changes to the community mobilisation intervention. Excessive binge drinking (i.e. the consumption of six or more standard drinks on any one occasion) was common among players. The perceived impact of the intervention programme among players was low; players and coaches believed that if future programmes were to succeed, a ‘bottom-up’ rather than a ‘top-down’ approach should be adopted.


The findings suggest that players perceived the community mobilisation programme to have had only limited success in changing attitudes or behaviour towards alcohol consumption in this amateur sports setting.

Corresponding author
*Address for correspondence: C.D. Darker, Department of Public Health & Primary Care, Trinity College Centre for Health Sciences, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin 24, Ireland. (Email
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Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine
  • ISSN: 0790-9667
  • EISSN: 2051-6967
  • URL: /core/journals/irish-journal-of-psychological-medicine
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