Presentation Title

The Influence of Social Interaction on Steroid Hormones Levels in Women after a Competition

Advisor Information

Rosemary Strasser

Location

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

7-3-2014 1:00 PM

End Date

7-3-2014 4:00 PM

Abstract

The fight-or-flight response has been the general prototypic response to threats. Both men and women have similar basic neuroendocrine responses to threat yet behaviorally men are more likely to engage in these types of responses more than women. Evolutionarily speaking, women have a greater investment in the care of offspring, which presents limitations in a fight or flight type response. Women are more likely to demonstrate a “tend-and-befriend” response to a stressor; which has been adapted over many generations by natural selection. This idea is supported by the observation that across species females exhibit more social affiliation to threats than males. This study will focus on the effects of social interaction after competition in women and how these interactions might affect testosterone and cortisol levels. The present study looked at 59 mixed-sex dog handlers in a dog agility competition in the Midwest. This environment represents an ideal social setting that includes clear-cut status of winners and losers, high investment in performance, and a large public audience of fellow competitors, spectators and judges. All of these factors influence the consequences of winning and losing more noticeably. Tending behavior will measured post competition between the handler and the dog. The results will be presented.

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Mar 7th, 1:00 PM Mar 7th, 4:00 PM

The Influence of Social Interaction on Steroid Hormones Levels in Women after a Competition

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

The fight-or-flight response has been the general prototypic response to threats. Both men and women have similar basic neuroendocrine responses to threat yet behaviorally men are more likely to engage in these types of responses more than women. Evolutionarily speaking, women have a greater investment in the care of offspring, which presents limitations in a fight or flight type response. Women are more likely to demonstrate a “tend-and-befriend” response to a stressor; which has been adapted over many generations by natural selection. This idea is supported by the observation that across species females exhibit more social affiliation to threats than males. This study will focus on the effects of social interaction after competition in women and how these interactions might affect testosterone and cortisol levels. The present study looked at 59 mixed-sex dog handlers in a dog agility competition in the Midwest. This environment represents an ideal social setting that includes clear-cut status of winners and losers, high investment in performance, and a large public audience of fellow competitors, spectators and judges. All of these factors influence the consequences of winning and losing more noticeably. Tending behavior will measured post competition between the handler and the dog. The results will be presented.