Dr. Abigail Larson is an associate professor of kinesiology at Southern Utah University.
Her passion for sports began early in her life. By the age of 16, she was already ski racing. Abigail raced for the Northern Michigan University Wildcats from 1997 - 2001 and was a four-time All-American. To help pay her way through graduate school, she raced the American Marathon Series circuit for the Subaru Factory Ski Team. She won the U.S. Cross Country Skiing National Championship in 2005. From 1999 - 2006 Larson participated in competitions all over the world and even competed with the 2006 U.S. Olympic Team in Torino, Italy.
Larson has authored and co-authored to 15 publications and over 40 articles about nutrition, sports, health, therapy, and exercise. Larson has also presented her research at 14 conferences on topics ranging from rock climbing to sports medicine. Her competitive sports history and passion for healthy lifestyles brought new and unique perspectives for her research and classroom.
Dr. Larson received a Master of Exercise Science from Northern Michigan University and a Doctorate of Exercise and Sports Science from the University of Utah. She is also a certified sports specialist dietitian, a certified strength and conditioning specialist and a registered dietitian.
Industry Expertise (4)
Writing and Editing
Sport - Amateur
Sport - Professional
Areas of Expertise (10)
Sport Rock Climbing
Bioenergetics and Sports Nutrition
Advanced Exercise Prescription
Olympic Weight Lifting
Sports Conditioning and Nutrition
University of Utah: Ph. D., Exercise and Sports Science
Northern Michigan University: M. Sc., Exercise Science
Media Appearances (2)
Abby Larson: Memorable 2005 Races "Gob-smacked" Athlete and Led to Olympic Berth
Minnesota Athletes online
It’s rare for an Olympian to admit that she “was the kid that was picked last for teams,” and “I didn’t have a lot of motor skill coordination.” Yet, it may be true and demonstrate that the right kind of coaching and support and personal resiliency, passion, and intensity can lead to an impressive athletic career. Meet Abigail “Abby” Larson, a 2006 Olympic cross country skier from Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, who has skied many venues around the world and is now an associate professor in exercise science and sports nutrition at Southern Utah University in Cedar City, Utah.
Congratulations to the 2018 Tenure Faculty
SUU Blog online
Dr. Abigail Larson, Assistant Professor of Exercise Science holds a B.S. and M.S. from Northern Michigan University and a Ph.D. from University of Utah. Her competitive sports history and passion for healthy lifestyles brings new and unique perspectives to her research and classroom. She has been at Southern Utah University since 2012.
Prevalence of amenorrhea in elite female competitive climbersElite Sports and Performance Enhancement
Joubert Lanae, Warme Amity, Larson Abigail, Grønhaug Gudmund, Michael Marisa, Schöffl Volker, Burtscher Eugen, Meyer Nanna
Elite competitive sport climbers exhibit a high strength-to-weight ratio and are reported in the literature to be lighter and leaner than their athletic counterparts. Current research regarding nutrition among climbers is sparse but suggests that they may be at high risk for low energy availability and Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S). The prevalence of amenorrhea, one of the primary indicators of RED-S, is unknown in this athletic population. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of current amenorrhea among elite level competitive sport climbers.
Self Reported History of Eating Disorders, Training, Weight Control Methods, and Body Satisfaction in Elite Female Runners Competing at the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon TrialsNational Library of Medicine
Sophia B, Kelly P, Ogan D, Larson A.
Athletes participating in endurance sports report frequent attempts to lose weight and greater training volumes in attempt to gain a competitive advantage. Increased exercise energy expenditure through training, weight periodization, and prevalence of eating disorder (ED) may affect energy availability. Low energy availability (LEA) is associated with negative physiological effects and an increased risk of bone fractures and illness in athletes. This study investigated the relationship between self-reported history of an ED with training, body satisfaction, and weight-control methods among female Olympic marathon trials participants.
Resilience, Psychological Stress, Physical Activity, and BMI among United States Air National Guardsmen: The COVID-19 PandemicNational Library of Medicine
Ligeza N, Larson A, DeBeliso M.
Military service members carry the responsibility to maintain physical and psychological readiness. As such, it is critical for researchers to begin unravelling the widespread impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on service member's mental and physical wellbeing. The aim of this research was to investigate the complex relationships between BMI, physical activity, psychological stress and resilience among United States Air National Guardsmen (USANG), specifically during the pandemic.
Prevalence of Disordered Eating Among International Sport Lead Rock ClimbersFront Sports Act Living.
Joubert LM, Gonzalez GB, Larson AJ.
Disordered eating (DE) is characterized as a range of irregular eating patterns or behaviors, which may lead to pathological eating or a clinical eating disorder diagnosis. DE patterns are associated with a variety of negative health outcomes. The prevalence of DE is highest in female athletes who participate in aesthetic or weight dependent sports. Elite rock climbers tend to be strong, small and lean, but the prevalence of DE in rock climbers is unknown. The purpose of the present study was to assess DE prevalence in a large group of international rock climbers and to explore the relationship between sport rock climbing ability and DE. A web-based survey assessed both DE and climbing ability based on the International Rock Climbing Research Association's position statement on comparative grading scales.
The Effects Of A Heavy Resistance Warm-up On Sprint Speed: A Post Activation Potentiation StudyMedicine & Science in Sports & Exercise
Abigail Larson, Brent Springall, and Mark DeBeliso
2017 The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of a post activation potentiation (PAP) warm-up on sprint speed, with an emphasis on the role of specificity regarding the preparatory conditioning activity.
Therapeutic Potential of Quercetin to Decrease Blood Pressure: Review of Efficacy and MechanismsAdvances in Nutrition: An International Review Journal
Larson, Abigail J., J. David Symons, and Thunder Jalili
2012 Epidemiological studies beginning in the 1990s have reported that intake of quercetin, a polyphenolic flavonoid found in a wide variety of plant-based foods, such as apples, onions, berries, and red wine, is inversely related to cardiovascular disease. More recent work using hypertensive animals and humans (>140 mm Hg systolic and >90 mm Hg diastolic) indicates a decrease in blood pressure after quercetin supplementation. A number of proposed mechanisms may be responsible for the observed blood pressure decrease such as antioxidant effects, inhibition of angiotensin-converting enzyme activity, and improved endothelium-dependent and -independent function...
Acute, quercetin-induced reductions in blood pressure in hypertensive individuals are not secondary to lower plasma angiotensin-converting enzyme activity or endothelin-1: nitric oxideNutrition Research
Larson, Abigail, et al.
2012 Quercetin (Q) reduces blood pressure (BP) in hypertensive individuals, but the mechanism is unknown.
Quercetin: a treatment for hypertension?—a review of efficacy and mechanismsQuercetin: A Treatment for Hypertension?—A Review of Efficacy and Mechanisms
Larson, Abigail J., J. David Symons, and Thunder Jalili
2010 Quercetin is a polyphenolic flavonoid. Common sources in the diet are apples, onions, berries, and red wine. Epidemiological studies have found an inverse relationship between dietary quercetin intake and cardiovascular disease...
PE 4010 Methods of Sports Conditioning and Nutrition
This course will introduce students to various physical conditioning methods utilized in sport training including plyometrics, Olympic weight lifting, speed/power training, and advanced exercise prescription.
PE 4015 Strength & Conditioning Methods Lab
Lab to accompany PE 4010 - Methods of Strength and Conditioning. This laboratory provides an opportunity to create, implement, and demonstrate strength and conditioning programs based on theories discussed in lecture.
PE 4020 Research Methods & Statistics Exercise Science
This course is an introduction to research and statistics in exercise science. Research ethics, basic research design, and statistics is discussed.
PE 4030 Clinical Applications of Exercise Science
This course will address the theoretical basis for, and practical applications of, exercise testing and prescription for diseased and special populations.
PE 4035 Clinical Applications of Exercise Science Lab
This course will address the practical applications of exercise testing and prescription for diseased and special populations.
PE 6020 Special Topics & Issues
Special topics and issues in sport conditioning and performance.
PE 6070 Psychological Aspects of Sport Performance and Conditioning
This course addresses the latest advances in exercise and sport psychology including motivation, concentration, overcoming mental fatigue, and stress management for athletes.
PE 6100 Bioenergetics & Sports Nutrition
This course will emphasize understanding how macronutrients, vitamins, minerals and water are digested and absorbed for metabolism and/or anabolism and the role of diet in promoting optimal adaptation to training for recreational to elite athletes.
PE 6933 Thesis: MSC Sport Conditioning
Student develops and defends a Master's of Sports Conditioning/Performance Thesis.