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Physical Activity before and during COVID-19 Pandemic and its Influence on Perceived Stress in University Students

Korkut, Buket (2021) Physical Activity before and during COVID-19 Pandemic and its Influence on Perceived Stress in University Students.

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Abstract:Background: The Covid-19 pandemic is expected to negatively impact the physical activity and mental health of university students. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine changes in physical activity since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. As previous literature identified the positive influence of physical activity on the mental well-being, it was tested if there is a causal relationship among physical activity and perceived stress. Lastly, gender differences regarding physical activity and perceived stress were tested. Methods: A web based cross-sectional design was used, to investigate physical activity (International Physical Activity Questionnaire- Short Form) and perceived stress (Perceived Stress Scale-10). To investigate the causal relationship between physical activity and perceived stress, a simple regression analysis was conducted. A repeated measures ANOVA was carried out to examine changes in physical activity. T-tests were carried out to identify gender differences in physical activity and perceived stress. Results: Results of 217 participants showed that the amount of Metabolic Equivalent score (MET-score) of university students significantly decreased since the beginning of the Covid- 19 pandemic (p=0.001). Physical activity during the Covid-19 pandemic significantly predicts the score of perceived stress among university students (β1 = -.245). Female university students (M= 18.87) showed more perceived stress than male students (M=14.44). Male university students (M=3032) indicated higher MET-scores than female students (M=2045). Conclusion: This study provides evidence that there is a negative effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on physical activity and that physical activity can reduce perceived stress of university students. Keywords: physical activity, perceived stress, university students, Covid-19 pandemic, gender differences
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/87549
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