Date of Award
Bernard B. Rees
The purpose of this study is to examine if testosterone shows reactivity to skydiving and to examine whether the testosterone level and reactivity was associated with sex and sensation seeking trait of the participants. Testosterone is an important steroid hormone which has several biological and socio-behavioral effects on people and is also present in disproportionate amounts in males and females; thus, it is important to explore how this hormone acts in different sex. Furthermore, exploring the relationship between sensation-seeking and testosterone could provide insight into the relation between psychological factor and hormonal response in humans. Forty-four people were recruited to participate in the study. The sample comprised of 73% males (N=32) and 27% females (N=12) with a mean age of 24 years (SD = 4.6) and an age range of 18 to 49. The participants volunteered to jump out of an airplane and give saliva samples at different time points during that day and during another day (basal levels). This study found that testosterone shows reactivity in response to skydiving, where the peak levels in males were higher than in females. It also found that people who scored higher in experience-seeking scores had higher testosterone level at jump than people who scored lower. Furthermore, it also revealed that people who scored higher in intension-seeking scores showed more reactivity in terms of testosterone i.e. the rise was steeper in these people. In summary, we see that psychological factors and sex predicted reactivity and peak level of testosterone after skydiving.
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Shrestha, Swornim M., "Testosterone Reactivity to Skydiving" (2013). Senior Honors Theses. 44.