Supervision of a trainer reduces depression symptoms
April 01, 2016
New study led by the University of Oviedo provides new data that prove that those symptoms are significantly alleviated when the sports practice is supervised by a trainer or qualified professional.
It is known that practicing sports reduces depression symptoms. New study led by the University of Oviedo provides new data that prove that those symptoms are significantly alleviated when the sports practice is supervised by a trainer or qualified professional. This is the main conclusion of a study conducted by researchers of the Asturian academic institution which has been published in the journal International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology.
The team of the University came to those conclusions after analyzing the behavior of 106 people–68 women and 38 men--, aged between 18 and 30, who were under supervision for 8 weeks. The participants in this study were divided into 4 groups: physical exercise with a trainer, intense physical exercise with no trainer, less intense physical exercise with no trainer and a placebo group.
José Antonio Cecchini Estrada, professor of the Department of Educational Sciences of the University of Oviedo, states the study revealed two major aspects. First, the fact that those who practiced sports supervised by a trainer achieved a higher reduction of depression symptoms than the rest of the groups, and second, that upon completion of the study, those people kept on practicing sports thus obtaining its beneficial effects.
The study shows that 59% of the people who practice sports under supervision, experience a decrease in symptoms
The reduction of depression symptoms is significant. 59% of the group members supervised by a trainer reduced depression symptoms, as opposed to 25% of those who practice intense sports on their own, 19% of those with a moderate practice and 3,84% of the control group.
José Antonio Cecchini states that the real importance of any treatment relies on its long-term effects. And here is where supervised sport practice becomes relevant. The study proved that after 6 months of the completion of the study, those who had joined the supervised group had the greatest benefits as regards reduction of depression symptoms.
This professor of the Department of Educational Sciences highlights that the importance of this study, entitled in English Exercise and Epstein's TARGET for treatment of depressive symptoms: A randomizez study, lies in the fact that, up to this moment, previous studies connected the amount of activity with the depression symptoms but they did not take into account the role of the trainer. "We have proved that–says José Antonio Cecchini—under a proper supervision, the therapeutic effects of physical activity increase, reducing symptoms".
What does a proper supervision mean? José Antonio Cecchini, one of the authors of this paper, explains that the tasks to be developed by the trainer shall be motivating, encouraging, shall promote effort, collaboration links among participants and be noticeable for those practicing sports.
The results of this study have obvious practical consequences, especially if we take into account that depression is a very common mental disorder. It is estimated that more than 350 million people suffer from this pathology, and the Worldwide Health Organization indicates that in 2020 depression will become the second cause of disability. José Antonio Cecchini explains that previous studies had analyzed the effects of physical activity on depression systems. There are evidences of the beneficial results, even when time devoted is scarce, of arebocic activities like cyclying, running or walking. Other activities like weight lifting, stretching or yoga have been less analyzed. Up to the moment, as the professor explains, there are no analysis relating sports and depression, considering the role of a trainer involved.
Exercise and Epstein's TARGET for treatment of depressive symptoms: A radomizez study. International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology. Septiembre. 2015. José Antonio Cecchini Estrada, Antonio Méndez Giménez, Christian Cecchini, Michael Moulton y Celestino Rodríguez. 4 (2), 166-181.
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