Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

2013 Edition
| Editors: Marc D. Gellman, J. Rick Turner

Physical Activity, Psychosocial Aspects, Benefits

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1005-9_1617


Numerous aspects of psychological well-being related to physical activity have been examined using epidemiological, cross-sectional, and experimental research strategies, including depression, anxiety, mood/affect, self-perception, cognitive performance, and quality of life. Moreover, these aspects have been considered in terms of acute bouts of exercise and chronic exercise/physical activity as well as potential underlying mechanisms.


It is well accepted that physical activity (PA) has important and far-reaching benefits for enhanced physical health and reduced risk of premature mortality. However, notable psychological benefits have also been documented in the literature (Buckworth & Dishman, 2002). Recently, increased attention has been drawn to examining the impact of PA on serious mental illnesses (e.g., schizophrenia, substance abuse/dependence, eating disorders) and a call to consider integrating PA programs into mental health services as a means to...

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References and Readings

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Psychology DepartmentUniversity of Minnesota DuluthDuluthUSA