A key question was why homophobic language was used so often by male athletes.
“It appears that conformity, rather than homophobia, is driving this language,” Denison told AFP.
“Boys grow up hearing this language, adopt it, and then pass it to the next generation
“We consistently find athletes who have positive attitudes to gay people are just as likely to use homophobic slurs.”
Rainbow-bedecked Pride games were pioneered by America’s National Hockey League to help tackle discrimination.
The Florida Panthers were the first professional hockey team to hold one in 2013 and they have since been adopted globally with sports such as Major League Baseball and Big Bash League cricket following suit.
But despite their growing appeal, little was known about their effect on homophobic behaviour.