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Physical activity

How is physical activity relevant to people with schizophrenia?

Individuals with a serious mental illness are more likely to be sedentary than the general population and are consequently at high risk for chronic medical conditions associated with inactivity. Physical activity has the potential to improve quality of life for people with schizophrenia. Positive psychological effects from physical activity in clinical populations have been reported, including improved quality of life.

What is the evidence for physical activity in people with schizophrenia?

Moderate quality evidence suggests a small effect that people with any severe mental illness are less active and more sedentary than controls. People with schizophrenia were less active, but also less sedentary, than people with bipolar disorder.
Decreased physical activity was associated with lower education, lower socio-economic status, longer illness duration, more hospitalisations, cardio-metabolic comorbidity, increased anti-psychotic side-effects, and negative symptoms.
Increased physical activity was associated with non-smokers, healthy eating and drinking habits, better physical fitness, knowledge on cardiovascular disease risk factors, greater belief in the physical activity benefits, intention to engage in physical activity, increased self-efficacy, better physical self-perception, and an improved health-related quality of life.


Also see the exercise therapy treatment topic.

September 2018

Page last updated: 1:37  23 September 2018

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