From 2005 to 2008, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago carried out two studies to determine the impact of Title IX legislation on physical activity and obesity in girls and women.
The enactment of Title IX of the Educational Amendments in 1972, which prohibits discrimination based on sex in educational programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance, led to a dramatic increase in girls' sports participation. Although effects on obesity were not considered at the time (prior to the increase in U.S. youth obesity levels), these two studies examined such effects.
The first study examined the effect of the increase in girls' participation in high school sports on adolescent girls' (ages 12 to 17) physical activity and weight. The second study sought to determine whether these effects persisted into adulthood for this cohort.
Researchers reported the following findings in "Effects of Title IX and Sports Participation on Girls' Physical Activity and Weight," published in Advances in Health Economics and Health Services Research:
In an unpublished follow-up report, "Title IX, Girls' Sports Participation and Adult Female Physical Activity and Weight," researchers reported the following findings: