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The effects of physical activity on the association between self-reported stress and episodic memory performance
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2010 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Recurrent stress has been found to impair brain structures essential to memory. The cognitive reserve model suggests that physical activity supplies protection against memory decline in neuropathologies. The purpose of the present study was to explore whether leisure physical activity modifies the predicted negative effect stress has on memory. A sub-sample derived from the Betula Study comprised 267 participants between 50 and 65 years. Memory was assessed by a SPT free recall and stress by a self-report. Low and High frequency exercisers were analyzed separately. After age, sex and education were controlled for in hierarchical regression, results showed that stress significantly improved memory performance in Low exercisers but no significant effect in High exercisers. Thus, frequency of physical activity did not explain variation in memory performance. However, higher age did not have a negative influence on memory performance for the High exercisers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 18 p.
Keyword [en]
cognitive reserve, episodic memory, physical activity, SPT free recall, stress
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-40411OAI: diva2:323821
2010-06-04, 00:00
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2010-06-17 Created: 2010-06-12 Last updated: 2010-06-17Bibliographically approved

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