The Association of Physical Activity and Stress in College Students
University of New Orleans
The purpose of this study is to measure the relationship between physical activity and stress levels among college students. The sample comprised of 27% males (N=18) and 73% (N=48) females with a mean age of 23.6 years and an age range of 19 to 54. 51% (N=34) of the participants were Caucasian, 22% (N=15) were African American, 9% (N=6) Hispanic, and 7% (N=10) were of other ethnic backgrounds. 0% (N=0) were freshman, 8% (N=5) were sophomores, 36% (N=24) were juniors, and 56% (N=37) were seniors. Participants completed questionnaires about stress and ...view middle of the document...
Aselton (2012) was interested in finding out how depressed college students cope with their daily sources of stress. The study included 13 students who were either taking or have taken anti-depressants during their college career. Each participant completed six to eight online interviews with the researcher. The researcher found that students turned to nonmedical coping strategies, such as physical activity, to relieve stress more frequently than taking medication. Rutter, Weatherill, Krill, Orazem, Taft (2013) hypothesized that posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and depressive symptoms would be related to both lower physical activity and poorer health. The researcher obtained self –reported questionnaires from 200 undergraduate students. Researchers used bivariate correlations to examine the relationships among the variables, and linear regression to examine the correlation of PTSD symptoms and depressive symptoms to health status. Cohen’s guidelines where then used to define the effect size. The researcher’s findings were consistent with the hypothesis. The results reflected the researcher’s expectation that PTSD symptoms and depressive symptoms were related to poorer physical and functional health at both the bivariate level and when observed together.
Ensel and Lin (2004) were interested in comparing the well-being of individuals who exercised to the well-being of individuals who do not exercise. The researchers hypothesized that physical activity and distress had either a direct, mediate, moderate, or indirect relationship. A face-to-face interview was conducted with 1,261 participants, age 18 or older. All hypothesizes were supported except for the relationship that physical activity mediated the effects of stress. The researchers found that physical fitness has both a direct and moderate effect on psychological and physical stress. In conclusion, higher levels of well-being are associated to those individuals who do exercise. Galper, Trievdi, Barlow, Dunn, Kampert (2006) were interested in the relationship between physical activity and mental health of men and women. The study included 5,451 men and 1,277 women. Each participant completed a maximal fitness treadmill test followed by self-report questionnaires that measured habitual physical activity, depressive symptoms, and emotional well-being. Researchers observed that, among the men and women, increased physical activity was associated with lower depression symptoms and greater emotional well-being.
Corazon et al. (2010) examined which types of activities participants engaged in to alleviate stress, as well as the association among physical activity and socioeconomic status, general health, and leisure time activities. The study included 7,797 individuals between 16 and 64 years old. Each individual completed a face-to-face interview followed by a self-administer questionnaire. In the end, results indicated that physical activity is related to an...