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Men Who Can't Play, Drink

Photo taken by Luis Cuellar. There are no usage restrictions for this photo.

Here's a shocker: "Men who are not confident in their sporting abilities may try and make up for this by drinking excessively."

So says Richard de Visser, whose new study looked into the masculine behaviors of young men in London and how it all affects their health.

The University of Sussex researcher did in-depth interviews with 31 men age 18-21, concluding that they commonly use one type of typically masculine behavior to compensate for their inability to perform another.

With the World Cup soccer tournament starting Friday, and his nation's young men expected to down a few extra pints during the televised action from Germany, de Visser thinks understanding the findings could improve health education.

The message: Play ball!

The results "may be able to have an impact on the growing levels of anti-social behavior such as binge-drinking, violence and illicit drug-use," de Visser said Sunday. "Young men could be encouraged to develop a competence in a healthy typically male area—such as football—to resist social pressures to engage in unhealthy masculine behaviors."

The study, funded by the UK's Economic and Social Research Council, will be published later this year in Psychology and Health and the Journal of Health Psychology.

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