Skip to main content

Walking away the blues

 
Walking on the treadmill

There is another reason why walking is good for us.

It can help women living with depression if it is done in conjunction with emotional and social support.

Nottingham University researchers recently unveiled a new exercise programme which involves group motivational support and a low effort walking plan.

The key to the new programme -- thanks to two years of study at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy -- is ‘mentored’ exercise, say the researchers.

It hopes to help women who are living with depression, characterised by low levels of physical activity, increasing health and weight problems, low self-esteem and a lack of motivation.

Some 40 women with depression in the Nottingham area took part in the research, which entails a pragmatic randomised trial of a standard "exercise-as-usual" programme compared with the new, individually tailored and supported plan.

The women volunteers attended sessions at their local authority leisure centre three times a week for four weeks.

In each session the women received a half hour motivational coaching session conducted by a health psychologist, in a small friendly group, followed by an individually tailored exercise session on the treadmill in the gym, supervised by a sports therapist.

The women exercised alongside each other and, if they needed it, received additional emotional and social support for the duration of their session, though this was slowly reduced as confidence and support from peers within the group grew.

Women on the special programme saw a significant improvement in their mood, physical health, sense of well being, self-esteem and quality of life.

They felt that they had achieved these gains via a positive, comfortable and unintimidating experience which encouraged regular and continued attendance.

One volunteer said: “I feel more confident in my physical self and my emotional self. I do think it has helped with my mood.”

Women on the "exercise as usual" programme did not report any significant benefits, were less likely to continue attending and were markedly less enthusiastic.

Previous research by the team had found that standard GP-prescribed exercise, usually gym sessions, don’t work well for this group as they find them discouraging and lonely, with many dropping out very early on.

The research team’s aim was to come up with a new type of exercise plan that would support and motivate the women for the duration of the treatment.

Team lead researcher Professor Patrick Callaghan said: “Exercise tailored to preferred exertion levels, combined with support from others is a prescription designed to improve depressed women’s overall health and well being.”

The women who participated in this study are those commonly seen in GP surgeries up and down Britain.
The research was conducted by Professor Patrick Callaghan, Elizabeth Khalil and Ioannis Morres at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy.

It was funded by the Burdett Trust for Nursing and has been adopted by East Midlands hub of the Mental Health Research Network, part of the National Institute for Health Research.
Source: University of Nottingham
For more on walking visit this blog.

Comments

Liyana said…
Is that you on the treadmill? Haha.
Faezah Ismail said…
No, it is not. I asked a friend to pose for me.

Popular Posts

My year at The Rakyat Post

Dec 31, 2014, the last day of the year and the end of my one year stint at The Rakyat Post , an online news portal.
Educational is the best way to sum up my year at The Rakyat Post.
Leaving your comfort zone is intimidating at first; it has a steep learning curve. But now I wish I had done it sooner and the whole exercise reaffirms my motto: “learn, learn, learn”.
Einstein was spot on when he said, “Learning is not a product of schooling but the lifelong attempt to acquire it”.
When I left theNew Straits Times to join The Rakyat Post on Jan 3, 2014, I didn’t know what to expect.
Nelson Fernandez, also known was Mohd Ridzwan Abdullah, had invited me to join him at the website this time last year.



He was charged with assembling a team to provide content for the portal. And I am glad I said yes.
Switching from traditional journalism to online journalism is challenging, as anyone who had made that transition will tell you.
Editorial content is disseminated by way of the internet as opposed to pub…

A spot of rural tranquillity in Ipoh

Your nerves are frayed and you need a dose of pleasingly rustic ambience without having to leave the city. There is such a spot for you, if you are in Ipoh. All you need to do is head for a block of flats called Kinta Heights in Pekan Lama, Ipoh, Perak, which is next to the Kinta River, one of the main branches of the Perak River.

Unbelievable, as it may seem, there are several nasi kandar outlets and sundry shops in the vicinity, set in the greenery, with a view and a walking path. I suggest that you have lunch at Ramli Nasi Kandar and after that, take a very short walk to the river bank for your rural retreat. You might be motivated to spend 10 minutes or more in total silence and tranquillity. This is the place I go to again and again.



You will feel irritated by people putting litter on the ground but I refuse to allow that to distract me. There is a 'Do not litter' notice here but some people don't seem to care. If you throw rubbish in your town, you are saying you do…

Don't Waste The Last 10 Nights of Ramadan - Mufti Menk | Deen 360