Physical activities (PA) that are pleasurable are likely to be repeated. Structured gym activities (SGA) are defined as dodging, chasing, and fleeing games. Traditional aerobic exercises (TAE) are defined as treadmill, cycle ergometer, and elliptical exercise. The purpose of this investigation was to compare affect and cardiorespiratory training responses between SGA and TAE in children. Thirty-two participants (9.3±0.2) were randomized to either the SGA or TAE group. Exercise training was seven weeks, with two sessions per week, for 35 minutes per session. Affect was measured by the (+5 (pleasurable) to -5 (displeasurable)) feelings scale. Affect was recorded at the mid-point and end of each exercise session. The 20-meter pacer test was used to assess cardiorespiratory fitness at baseline and post intervention. Affect responses and heart rates were averaged across all exercise sessions. The SGA group scored 2.77±0.2 affect units higher than the TAE group (p < 0.0001). The TAE group significantly increased cardiorespiratory fitness (baseline 47.8±3.8; post 49.1±3.1 ml·kg-1·min-1; p = 0.023) with no change in the SGA group (baseline 46.3±3.5; post 47.2±2.7 ml·kg-1·min-1; p = 0.127). SGA reported more positive affect, suggesting they experienced greater pleasure during the exercise sessions than the TAE participants. SGA activities promote more positive affect, and therefore may increase children's PA participation.
Int J Exerc Sci
Physical Conditioning, Human; Children; Pleasure; Exercise
Physical activity; Exercise
White, D. A., Rothenberger, S. D., Hunt, L. A., Goss, F. L. Comparison of Affect and Cardiorespiratory Training Responses Between Structured Gym Activities and Traditional Aerobic Exercise in Children. Int J Exerc Sci 9, 16-25 (2016).