Submitted: 08 Jun 2016
Revised: 07 Aug 2016
Accepted: 22 Nov 2016
First published online: 05 Mar 2017
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Health Promot Perspect. 2017;7(2):88-94.
doi: 10.15171/hpp.2017.16
PMID: 28326289
PMCID: PMC5350555
  Abstract View: 641
  PDF Download: 441
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Original Article

Experimentally increasing sedentary behavior results in decreased life satisfaction

Meghan K. Edwards 1, Paul D. Loprinzi 1 *

1 Department of Health, Exercise Science and Recreation Management, Physical Activity Epidemiology Laboratory, Exercise Psychology Laboratory, The University of Mississippi, University, MS, USA


Background: No study has experimentally manipulated sedentary behavior and evaluated its effect on life satisfaction. Thus, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of a free-living, sedentary behavior-inducing randomized controlled intervention on life satisfaction.

Methods: Active, young adults between the ages of 18-35 were recruited and randomly assigned into a sedentary behavior intervention group (n = 26) or a control group (n = 13). The intervention group participants were instructed to eliminate all exercise and restrict daily steps (as measured via pedometry) to 5000 or less per day for one week. The control group was instructed to maintain regular levels of exercise and other physical activity for one week. Both groups completed the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS) pre-intervention and immediately post-intervention.

Results: There was a significant group x time interaction (F = 32.75, P < 0.001), with post-hoc contrast tests indicating decreased SWLS score (indicating lower levels of life satisfaction) in the intervention group during Visit 2 (post-intervention) compared with Visit 1 (pre-intervention); this corresponded with a mean absolute (Visit 2 minus Visit 1) change of -8.58 (95% CI: -5.91, -11.24) for SWLS scores in the intervention group (31.1% reduction).

Conclusion: A one-week sedentary behavior-inducing intervention may negatively impact life satisfaction in an active, young adult population. Regular physical activity may be imperative in avoiding negative life satisfaction-related consequences.

Citation: Edwards MK, Loprinzi PD. Experimentally increasing sedentary behavior results in decreased life satisfaction. Health Promot Perspect. 2017;7(2):88-94. doi: 10.15171/hpp.2017.16.
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