Disordered Eating in High Performance Sport

Disordered eating can occur in any athlete, in any sport, at any time, crossing boundaries of gender, age, body size, culture, socio-economic background, athletic calibre and ability. 

Gymnastics Australia has welcomed and supports the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) and the National Eating Disorders Collaboration (NEDC) position on Disordered Eating in High Performance Sport released today and available to read here.

As part of the announcement, the AIS and NEDC have collaborated to provide a position statement which contains guidelines for athletes, coaches, support staff, clinicians and sporting organisations which support the prevention and early identification of disordered eating. 

They are a call to action to all involved in sport to be aware of disordered eating, poor self esteem and body image among athletes. 

Playing a central role in the development of these important resources, Gymnastics Australia (GA) attended several stakeholder workshops which helped shape the Position Statement. Represented by GA’s Athlete Wellbeing and Engagement Manager, Stephanie Moorhouse, Sports Dietitian and Director of The Mindful Dietitian and Body Positive Australia, Fiona Sutherland and GA’s National Performance Director, Andrew Logan, we talked through how and why we established the Body Positive Guidelines for our sport and made recommendations to the authors of this position paper. 

The Body Positive Guidelines set clear boundaries on what is acceptable language and behaviour for coaches, parents, judges, support staff and administrative staff when working with gymnasts of all ages, genders and training levels. 

These boundaries apply to environments that are inclusive of, but not limited to, day-to-day training environment, National Training Camps, team travel and competitions. To view the GA Body Positive Guidelines, click here.

Gymnastics Australia will continue to work with the AIS, NEDC and other sporting organisations to ensure athlete health and safety is and always will be our number one priority. 

To find out more about the Disordered Eating in High Performance Sport Position Statement, click here.