Creatine Usage and Education of Track and Field Throwers at National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I Universities

J Strength Cond Res. 2015 Jul;29(7):2034-40. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000818.


The purpose of this study was to analyze the level of creatine use along with the perceived benefits and barriers of creatine use among collegiate athletes who participate in throwing events within the sport of track and field. A total of 258 throwers from National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I institutions completed an online survey regarding creatine. The results provided baseline levels of creatine use and allowed for the analysis of factors related to athletic conference affiliation. Results indicate that creatine use remains to be a common (32.7%) practice among throwers with significantly higher levels of use among Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) conference athletes (44.6%) than Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) conference athletes (28.8%), χ² = 5.505, p = 0.019. The most common reasons for using creatine included a desire to improve/increase: strength (83.3%), recovery time (69.0%), and performance (60.7%). The most common perceived obstacles included contamination/quality control (39.5%), cost (33.3%), inconvenience (16.7%), and cramping (14.3%). A desire for additional education and training was noted through an expression of interest (55.6%) with significantly higher levels of interest from FBS athletes (65.6%) than FCS athletes (52.2%), χ² = 6.425, p = 0.039. However, the athletic departments provide nutritional supplement counseling at only 26.6% of the schools. Although the access to full-time nutritionist counsel was available at 57.3% of the schools, there was a significant difference (χ² = 9.096, p = 0.003) between FBS schools (73.7%) and FCS schools (51.7%).

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Consumer Health Information*
  • Creatine* / adverse effects
  • Dietary Supplements* / adverse effects
  • Drug Utilization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Performance-Enhancing Substances* / adverse effects
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Track and Field / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States
  • Universities
  • Young Adult


  • Performance-Enhancing Substances
  • Creatine