Physical activity and mental health in a student population

Philip Tyson, Kelly Wilson, Diane Crone, Richard Brailsford, K.R. Laws

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)
305 Downloads (Pure)


Aims: The present study investigates the association between physical activity and mental health in an undergraduate university population based in the United Kingdom.

Method: One hundred students completed questionnaires measuring their levels of anxiety and depression using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and their physical activity regime using the Physical Activity Questionnaire (PAQ).

Results: Significant differences were observed between the low, medium and high exercise groups on the mental health scales, indicating better mental health for those who engage in more exercise.

Conclusions: Engagement in physical activity can be an important contributory factor in the mental health of undergraduate students.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)492-499
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Mental Health
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010


  • Hospital anxiety
  • dose-response
  • exercise
  • depression
  • mood
  • metaanalysis
  • benefits
  • therapy
  • fitness
  • illness


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