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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2005 Dec;37(12):2032-7.

Effects of acute exercise on mood and well-being in patients with major depressive disorder.

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The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Kinesiology and Health Education, Exercise Psychology Laboratory, Austin, TX 78712, USA.



This study was designed to determine if a single bout of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise would improve mood and well-being in 40 (15 male, 25 female) individuals who were receiving treatment for major depressive disorder (MDD).


All participants were randomly assigned to exercise at 60-70% of age-predicted maximal heart rate for 30 min or to a 30-min period of quiet rest. Participants completed both the Profile of Mood States (POMS) and Subjective Exercise Experiences Scale (SEES) as indicators of mood 5 min before, and 5, 30, and 60 min following their experimental condition.


Both groups reported similar reductions in measures of psychological distress, depression, confusion, fatigue, tension, and anger. Only the exercise group, however, reported a significant increase in positive well-being and vigor scores.


Although 30 min of either moderate-intensity treadmill exercise or quiet rest is sufficient to improve the mood and well-being of patients with MDD, exercise appears to have a greater effect on the positively valenced states measured.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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