THE EFFECT OF MODERATE-VIGOROUS PHYSICAL ACTIVITY ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PERCEIVED STRESS AND COVID-19
Jacklyn Rojas, Patricia Pagan Lassalle, Lauren C. Bates, Eric D. Hanson, FACSM, Lee Stoner, FACSM. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC.
BACKGROUND: It has been well established that regular physical activity (PA) provides numerous benefits, such as lowering incidence of cardiovascular disease, reducing anxiety, and depression. However, the COVID-19 pandemic caused many of the regular avenues for PA, such as gyms and walking trails, come to a screeching halt. This made it remarkably difficult to be physically active. Simultaneously, the tumultuous nature of the pandemic resulted in increased perceived stress (PS). This study aims to determine whether an increase in minutes spent doing moderate-vigorous PA (MVPA) modifies the relationship between PS and COVID-19 prevalence. METHODS: In December 2020, an online convenience sample of 746 adults aged 18 years or older residing in the US were recruited. Of the sample, 407 (38.9 ± 14.3 years old, 51% female, 77% White) provided data for the variables in question. Participants self-reported demographic information, COVID-19 diagnosis (yes/no), and total MVPA (mins per week). Logistic regression was used to assess the relationship between PS, MVPA, and COVID-19 prevalence. RESULTS: We adjusted the models for sociodemographic variables. Holding age, gender, race, education, and total PS constant, there was a non-significant decrease in the odds of having COVID-19 for a 1-minute increase in MVPA (OR=0.99, 95%CI=0.99,1.00). Holding age, gender, race, education, and MVPA constant, there was a non-significant decrease in the odds of having COVID-19 for a 1-unit increase in total PS (OR=0.99, 95%CI=0.99,1.00). CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study demonstrate that an increase in MVPA does not modify the relationship between PS and COVID-19 in our sample. One possible explanation the results is that our sample was not active enough. An alternative explanation is that the mental health benefits gained from PA, regardless of volume, was insufficient at alleviating pandemic-related stress. This would provide further insight into the detrimental effects the COVID-19 pandemic had on the mental health in the United States.
Rojas, J; Lassalle, PP; Bates, LC; Hanson, FACSM, ED; and Stoner, FACSM, L
"THE EFFECT OF MODERATE-VIGOROUS PHYSICAL ACTIVITY ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PERCEIVED STRESS AND COVID-19,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Proceedings: Vol. 16:
1, Article 98.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijesab/vol16/iss1/98