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Running, Attention Restoration Theory and Environmental Compatibility.

Suckley, D (2015) Running, Attention Restoration Theory and Environmental Compatibility. Masters thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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The psychological responses to exercise have often taken place without a theoretical framework. Attention Restoration Theory (ART, Kaplan, 1995), previously used to explain the psychological responses to particular environments, most notably, nature, has been expanded beyond its current paradigm to incorporate activities, such as running (Norlinget al., 2008, 2010). This paper qualitatively explores the experience of running within the ART paradigm through pre- and post-intervention interviews with 18 subjects, randomly allocated to three contrasting environments (green, urban and indoor). The data was subject to a theoretical thematic analysis by applying interview data to the framework of ART. The results provide insight into how running is able to achieve the four components of ART (fascination, being-away, extent and compatibility). Of particular importance was the environments influence over involuntary distractions; thoughts that emerge sub-consciously and are unrelated to running. Involuntary distractions closely align with involuntary attention; the attention system one must switch to enable restoration. The results are discussedin relation to previous literature on the exercise-environment interaction, and syntheses of four research areas (environmental psychology, exercise psychology, cognitive neuroscience and neurobiology) is provides a theoretical explanation behind running’s ability to restore directed attention.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine
Divisions: Sport & Exercise Sciences
Date Deposited: 04 Nov 2016 16:40
Last Modified: 03 Sep 2021 23:26
DOI or ID number: 10.24377/LJMU.t.00004386
Supervisors: Murphy, Rebecca and Watson, Paula
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/4386
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