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The role of mindfulness in physical activity

Schneider, J (2019) The role of mindfulness in physical activity. Doctoral thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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Abstract

Despite public health campaigns to promote physical activity (PA), physical inactivity affects 60% of the world population and continues to pose a risk of overweight and obesity, type 2 diabetes, and related cancers. Current interventions show small to moderate changes in PA and limited long-term effects, possibly because they fail to prepare individuals for PA behaviour change. Mindfulness has the potential to address psychological barriers of change and foster greater acceptance of PA. However, little is currently known about the mindfulness-PA relationship and the potential of mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) for PA. This PhD examined two main research questions: 1) what is the effect of mindfulness on PA outcomes, and 2) what is the relationship between mindfulness and psychological factors related to PA? Study one provided the first systematic review on the role of mindfulness for PA. Evidence showed a positive relationship between DM and psychological factors related to PA and beneficial between-subjects effects of MBIs on PA outcomes. Interventions were more likely to be successful if they were PA-specific and targeted psychological factors related to PA. Study two explored the relationship between DM and PA outcomes using a prospective cohort design. Statistical modelling techniques of cross-sectional and longitudinal data showed that DM predicted autonomous exercise motivation and PA acceptance, which in turn predicted baseline PA, but no effect was found for change in PA over time. Study three examined the effectiveness and feasibility of a novel MBI for PA (MfPA) in a sample of underactive participants. One-way, repeated-measures ANOVAs revealed improvements in PA acceptance and autonomous exercise motivation, but no change in DM, self-control, or PA. Thematic analysis of qualitative data suggested that the MfPA intervention was successful at improving participants’ relationship with PA. Taken together, these studies provide a unique insight into the beneficial effect of mindfulness on psychological factors related to sustained PA and its potential for increasing autonomous exercise motivation and PA acceptance in novice exercisers. Future research is required to evaluate the effectiveness of the MfPA intervention using a randomised controlled trial, by employing an active matched control group without a mindfulness component.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: mindfulness; physical activity; motivation; acceptance; mindfulness-based intervention
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Divisions: Psychology (new Sep 2019)
Date Deposited: 22 Oct 2019 09:57
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2019 09:58
DOI or Identification number: 10.24377/LJMU.t.00011558
Supervisors: Lattimore, P, Malinowski, P and Watson, P
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11558

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