Topic Editors

Department of Sport Rehabilitation, Shanghai University of Sport, Shanghai, China
Department of Health Sciences and Kinesiology, Walter's College of Health Professions, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA 30460, USA
1. CAS Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2. Department of Psychology, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China

Physical Exercise Impacts on Human Physical and Psychological Health

Abstract submission deadline
30 March 2025
Manuscript submission deadline
30 June 2025
Viewed by
17334

Topic Information

Dear Colleagues,

According to the WHO, health represents a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being. Multiple guidelines encourage physical exercise as a non-pharmacological intervention for individuals of all ages to improve health, without the absence of side effects. Sufficient evidence has indicated that physical exercise is associated with lower morbidities and mortality rates. Nevertheless, further understanding the effect of physical activity on specific systems (musculoskeletal system, nervous system, respiratory system, circulatory system, etc.) is still a demanding and major public health interest. In addition, the positive effects of physical exercise vary according to its different parameters and targeted population. Verifying the optimal physical exercise patterns for populations with different pathological issues are equally essential.

For this Topic, we encourage researchers to submit high-quality observational, experimental and review studies that provide evidence about the biomechanical, physiological and psychological effects as well as the underlying mechanisms of physical exercise. High-quality randomized controlled trials investigating the impacts of physical exercise are particularly welcomed. Meanwhile, we are also interested in literature reviews summarizing the underlying improvement mechanism of physical exercise, longitudinal cohort studies or systematic reviews with meta-analyses.

Prof. Dr. Xueqiang Wang
Dr. Li Li
Prof. Dr. Li Hu
Topic Editors

Keywords

  • physical exercise
  • physical health
  • psychological health
  • chronic disease
  • biomechanism
  • physiology
  • effectiveness
  • mechanism

Participating Journals

Journal Name Impact Factor CiteScore Launched Year First Decision (median) APC
Healthcare
healthcare
2.8 2.7 2013 19.5 Days CHF 2700 Submit
Hygiene
hygiene
- - 2021 14.9 Days CHF 1000 Submit
Journal of Clinical Medicine
jcm
3.9 5.4 2012 17.9 Days CHF 2600 Submit
Life
life
3.2 2.7 2011 17.5 Days CHF 2600 Submit
Sports
sports
2.7 5.2 2013 19.3 Days CHF 1800 Submit

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Published Papers (10 papers)

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11 pages, 604 KiB  
Article
FTO rs9939609: T>A Variant and Physical Inactivity as Important Risk Factors for Class III Obesity: A Cross-Sectional Study
by Erika Martínez-López, Mariana Perez-Robles, Joel Torres-Vanegas, Sissi Godinez-Mora, Iris Monserrat Llamas-Covarrubias and Wendy Campos-Perez
Healthcare 2024, 12(7), 787; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12070787 - 04 Apr 2024
Viewed by 452
Abstract
Background: The prevalence of obesity has been increasing worldwide. It has been reported that physiological and environmental factors such as diet, culture, physical activity, and genetics are the principal factors related to obesity. The fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gen variant [...] Read more.
Background: The prevalence of obesity has been increasing worldwide. It has been reported that physiological and environmental factors such as diet, culture, physical activity, and genetics are the principal factors related to obesity. The fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gen variant (rs9939609: T>A) has been associated with class III obesity. The A variant has been correlated with anthropometric and metabolic alterations. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to analyze the association of the FTO rs9939609: T>A variant and environmental factors with clinical, anthropometric, and biochemical variables in subjects with class III obesity. Results: The A variant frequency was higher in the class III obesity group compared with the normal weight group (44% vs. 25%, p < 0.001). Subjects with the AA genotype had a higher body mass index (BMI) than those with the AT genotype (35.46 kg/m2 (31–39.8) vs. 26.91 kg/m2 (23.7–30), p = 0.005). Women with the AA genotype showed higher waist circumferences than the AT group (101.07 cm (90.9–111.1) vs. 85.45 cm (77–93.8) p = 0.047). The FTO A variant increases the risk by 3.54 times and physical inactivity increases the risk by 6.37 times for class III obesity. Conclusions: Our results suggest that among the studied variables, those most related to class III obesity were the FTO risk genotype (A allele) and physical inactivity. Full article
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13 pages, 300 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Competitive Sports on Oral Health: Exploring Their Relationship with Salivary Oxidative Stress in Children
by Mădălina Nicoleta Matei, Paul Șerban Popa, Antonela Magdalena Covaci, Oana Chipirliu, Kamel Earar, George Stoica, Andreea Eliza Zaharia, Nicoleta Maricica Maftei, Gabriela Gurău, Elena Lăcrămioara Lisă and Anamaria Zaharescu
Healthcare 2023, 11(22), 2927; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11222927 - 08 Nov 2023
Viewed by 813
Abstract
This article explores the correlation between salivary biomarkers, such as glutathione peroxidase (GPX), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), and superoxide dismutase (SOD), and their association with oral health for children in competitive sports. Saliva has emerged as a valuable resource for evaluating physiological and [...] Read more.
This article explores the correlation between salivary biomarkers, such as glutathione peroxidase (GPX), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), and superoxide dismutase (SOD), and their association with oral health for children in competitive sports. Saliva has emerged as a valuable resource for evaluating physiological and pathological conditions due to its non-invasive collection method and easy storage. This study examines the potential of GPX, TAC, and SOD as salivary biomarkers for assessing the impact of competitive sports on children’s oral health. It discusses the potential implications of increased oxidative stress due to intense physical activity and the role of antioxidant defense mechanisms in maintaining oral health. In total, 173 children aged between 6 and 17 were divided into three groups, 58 hockey players, 55 football players, and 60 in the control group, and examined to assess their oral hygiene and dental and periodontal health. Saliva was collected, centrifuged, and the supernatant was analyzed for the relevant biomarkers. The findings seem to suggest that salivary biomarkers, like GPX, TAC, and SOD, might serve as indicators of the physiological response to competitive sports in children, as well as indicators of oral health, especially dental cavities, and periodontal disease. Statistical analysis showed significant differences between the groups, with better values for athletes, regardless of age, sex, or activity type. Understanding the relationship between salivary biomarkers and competitive sports in children can have significant implications for monitoring and optimizing the health and performance of young athletes. Further research is needed to establish the specific associations between these biomarkers and the effects of several types and intensities of sports activities on oral health in children. Full article
10 pages, 869 KiB  
Article
Exploring an Unknown Corner of a Well-Known Topic: HIIE Influence on Renal Health and Filtration in Healthy Individuals Free of Cardiometabolic Diseases
by Jeffrey S. Forsse, Kathleen A. Richardson, Ricardo Torres, Catherine Lowry, James Kyle Taylor, Cassidy L. Beeson, Jacob Ward, Anurag Dhillon, Brock Niceler, Ahmed Ismaeel and Panagiotis Koutakis
Sports 2023, 11(11), 210; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports11110210 - 30 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1279
Abstract
Aerobic exercise, specifically high-intensity interval exercise (HIIE), and its effects on renal health and filtration (RHF) are not well understood. Several studies support incorporating contemporary biomarkers serum cystatin C (CyC) and urine epidermal growth factor (uEGF) to combat the volatility of serum creatinine [...] Read more.
Aerobic exercise, specifically high-intensity interval exercise (HIIE), and its effects on renal health and filtration (RHF) are not well understood. Several studies support incorporating contemporary biomarkers serum cystatin C (CyC) and urine epidermal growth factor (uEGF) to combat the volatility of serum creatinine (sCr). Using these biomarkers, we examined the acute influences HIIE has on RHF to determine if there is a ceiling effect in healthy populations. The purpose was to determine the influence of an acute bout of HIIE on RHF. Thirty-six participants (n = 22 males; n = 14 females; age 37.6 ± 12.4 years.; BF% 19.2 ± 7.1%; VO2max 41.8 + 7.4 mL/kg/min) completed 30 min of HIIE on a treadmill (80% and 40% of VO2reserve in 3:2 min ratio). Blood and urine samples were obtained under standardized conditions before, 1 h, and 24 h post-exercise. CyC, sCR, uEGF, urine creatinine (uCr), uCr/uEGF ratio, and multiple estimates of glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) Modification of Diet in Renal Disease (MDRD) and CKD-EPI equations were used. The analysis employed paired sample t-tests and repeated measures ANOVAs. CyC, uEGF, uCr, and uCr/uEGF ratio concentrations were not altered between timepoints. sCr increased 1 h post-exercise (p > 0.002) but not at 24 h post-exercise. eGFR decreased in the MDRD and CKD-EPI equations at 1 h (p > 0.012) with no changes at 24 h post-exercise. CyC and sCr/CyC demonstrated no significant changes. CyC and uEGF are not altered by acute HIIE. The results demonstrate a potential ceiling effect in contemporary and traditional biomarkers of RHF, indicating improvements in RHF may be isolated to populations with reduced kidney function. Full article
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9 pages, 233 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Exercise Training on Physical Activity among Elderly Women in the Community: A Pilot Study
by You-Ying Lii, Yao-Chung Tai, Hung-Yi Wang, I-Chen Yeh, Yen-Chun Chiu, Chieh-Yi Hou and Feng-Hua Tsai
Healthcare 2023, 11(18), 2601; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11182601 - 21 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 792
Abstract
According to a survey conducted by the Taiwanese government, the elderly spend most of their time watching TV for their daily leisure activities, and most do not pant or sweat during exercise. Relevant studies have shown that physical activity has benefits and importance [...] Read more.
According to a survey conducted by the Taiwanese government, the elderly spend most of their time watching TV for their daily leisure activities, and most do not pant or sweat during exercise. Relevant studies have shown that physical activity has benefits and importance for the physical functions of the elderly. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of exercise training on the functional fitness of elderly females in the community. The women subjects were from the community of Kaohsiung City, Taiwan. In total, 34 females were randomly divided into an intervention group and a control group. The ages of the subjects ranged from 65 to 80 years old, with an average age of 75.13. The experimental group continued their physical activity intervention for 20 weeks. The control group had no training plan. The results of the study showed that after 20 weeks of intervention, participants in the intervention group experienced improvements in back grasping, right-hand grip strength, sitting to standing, right hip flexion, right knee extension, right ankle dorsiflexion, right sitting forward extension balance, and sitting back around objects. Six-minute walking distances also showed a significant difference in all cases. The results demonstrated that the 20-week physical activity program intervention used in this study can assist in improving back grasping, right-hand grip strength, sitting to standing, right-hand sitting posture, forward balance, sitting back around objects, and six-minute walking distance among older women in the community. In summary, we recommend a moderate-intensity physical activity exercise program for older women in the community. Full article
10 pages, 280 KiB  
Article
A Repeated Cross-Sectional Pilot Study of Physical Activity, Levels of Depression and Anxiety during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Young Greek Adults
by Smaragda Skalidou, Andreas Anestis, Emmanouil Skalidis, Ourania Kontaxi, Athanasia Kyrezi, Panagiota Konstantinou and Konstantinos Papadimitriou
Healthcare 2023, 11(18), 2493; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11182493 - 08 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 730
Abstract
Regular physical activity (PA) and, more specifically, exercise, is associated with lower levels of stress, depression, and anxiety. The aim of this repeated cross-sectional pilot study was to investigate the impact of participating in PA on the mental health of young adults in [...] Read more.
Regular physical activity (PA) and, more specifically, exercise, is associated with lower levels of stress, depression, and anxiety. The aim of this repeated cross-sectional pilot study was to investigate the impact of participating in PA on the mental health of young adults in Greece during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study was carried out during two quarantine periods: Survey I on 5 May 2020, and Survey II on 30 April 2021. The Hamilton Anxiety (HAM-A) and Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) scales and the level of PA were used to assess a sample of individuals aged between 18 and 26 years old. In 2020 and 2021, a total of 268 (33.9% males) and 380 (37.1% females) subjects participated in the studies, respectively. According to the findings, the vast majority of the participants in both samples reported that they are physically active (p = 0.86), while they consider exercise as a significant health factor (p = 0.10). Moreover, anxiety levels statistically significant increased (p = 0.001), while depression levels remained relatively stable with a slight increase of approximately (p > 0.05). Additionally, in both surveys, individuals who engaged in a PA program exhibited reduced levels of depression and anxiety (p = 0.001). Also, gender appears to influence anxiety and depression levels, while a lack of exercise exacerbates these measures in both genders when compared to physically active individuals. Concludingly, it is crucial for public health strategies to include interventions that promote safe PA in the event of future lockdowns or similar emergencies. Full article
12 pages, 999 KiB  
Article
Impact of Physical Fitness on Emergency Response: A Case Study of Factors That Influence Individual Responses to Emergencies among University Students
by Senka Bajić, Dragoljub Veljović and Borko Đ. Bulajić
Healthcare 2023, 11(14), 2061; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11142061 - 19 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1688
Abstract
(1) Background: The purpose of this study was to ascertain whether there is a direct correlation between the physical fitness of the general population, specifically students, and the response times to fire-emergency-related building evacuations and to identify which physical fitness factors more significantly [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The purpose of this study was to ascertain whether there is a direct correlation between the physical fitness of the general population, specifically students, and the response times to fire-emergency-related building evacuations and to identify which physical fitness factors more significantly influenced emergency movement times. (2) Methods: In this quantitative investigation, 21 students (both men and women of the same age) volunteered to participate. We first evaluated their physical fitness; then, we analyzed their reaction times and speed. (3) Results: The results of this study revealed a relationship between emergency response times and evaluations of muscular strength, muscular endurance, muscle power, cardiorespiratory fitness, and body composition. The physically active group demonstrated a stronger initial response (i.e., a shorter time to reach a safe location) to fictitious emergency scenarios. The reduction in the necessary response time did not, however, appear to be related to the degree of flexibility. (4) Conclusions: This study showed how physical fitness might alter initial emergency response times and lessen the effects of a disaster on the general population. Full article
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20 pages, 680 KiB  
Review
Exercise for Mental Well-Being: Exploring Neurobiological Advances and Intervention Effects in Depression
by Jianchang Ren and Haili Xiao
Life 2023, 13(7), 1505; https://doi.org/10.3390/life13071505 - 04 Jul 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 6176
Abstract
Depression is a common mental disorder in which patients often experience feelings of sadness, fatigue, loss of interest, and pleasure. Exercise is a widely used intervention for managing depression, but the specific molecular mechanisms underlying its antidepressant effect are unclear. In this narrative [...] Read more.
Depression is a common mental disorder in which patients often experience feelings of sadness, fatigue, loss of interest, and pleasure. Exercise is a widely used intervention for managing depression, but the specific molecular mechanisms underlying its antidepressant effect are unclear. In this narrative review, we aim to synthesize current knowledge on the molecular, neural, and physiological mechanisms through which exercise exerts its antidepressant effect and discuss the various exercise interventions used for managing depression. We conducted a narrative review of the literature on the topic of exercise and depression. Our review suggests that exercise impacts peripheral tryptophan metabolism, central inflammation, and brain-derived neurotrophic factors through the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ activating factor 1α (PGC-1α) in skeletal muscles. The uncarboxylated osteocalcin facilitates “bone-brain crosstalk”, and exercise corrects atypical expression of brain-gut peptides, modulates cytokine production and neurotransmitter release, and regulates inflammatory pathways and microRNA expression. Aerobic exercise is recommended at frequencies of 3 to 5 times per week with medium to high intensity. Here we highlight the significant potential of exercise therapy in managing depression, supported by the molecular, neural, and physiological mechanisms underlying its antidepressant effect. Understanding the molecular pathways and neural mechanisms involved in exercise’s antidepressant effect opens new avenues for developing novel therapies for managing depression. Full article
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12 pages, 640 KiB  
Article
Optimal Physical Activity Is Associated with the Reduction of Depressive Symptoms via Neuroticism and Resilience
by Kazuki Nakajima, Akiyoshi Shimura, Masayuki Kikkawa, Shunichiro Ito, Mina Honyashiki, Yu Tamada, Shinji Higashi, Masahiko Ichiki, Takeshi Inoue and Jiro Masuya
Healthcare 2023, 11(13), 1900; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11131900 - 30 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 908
Abstract
Background: Personality traits, such as neuroticism, that results in vulnerability to stress, and resilience, a measure of stress coping, are closely associated with the onset of depressive symptoms, whereas regular physical activity habits have been shown to reduce depressive symptoms. In this study, [...] Read more.
Background: Personality traits, such as neuroticism, that results in vulnerability to stress, and resilience, a measure of stress coping, are closely associated with the onset of depressive symptoms, whereas regular physical activity habits have been shown to reduce depressive symptoms. In this study, the mediating effects of neuroticism and resilience between physical activity duration and depressive symptoms were investigated by a covariance structure analysis. Methods: Between April 2017 and April 2018, 526 adult volunteers were surveyed using self-administered questionnaires. Demographic information, habitual physical activity duration (PAD), neuroticism, and resilience were investigated. The effects of these factors on depressive symptoms were analyzed by a covariance structure analysis. This study was conducted with the approval of the Medical Ethics Committee of Tokyo Medical University. Results: The dose–response curves of physical activity duration and depression scores were U-shaped: the optimal physical activity duration for the lowest depression score was 25.7 h/week. We found that the greater the difference from the optimal PAD, the higher the neuroticism and the lower the resilience, and the more severe the depressive symptoms. Covariance structure analysis demonstrated that neuroticism and resilience significantly and completely mediated the effects of the difference from the optimal PAD on depressive symptoms (coefficient of determination R2 = 0.349). Conclusion: Our study suggests that there is an optimal PAD that reduces depressive symptoms, and that a greater difference from the optimal PAD increases depressive symptoms through neuroticism and resilience. Full article
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18 pages, 566 KiB  
Article
Effects of a Home-Based Physical Activity Program on Blood Biomarkers and Health-Related Quality of Life Indices in Saudi Arabian Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Patients: A Randomized Controlled Trial
by Jonathan Sinclair, Hussein Ageely, Mohamed Salih Mahfouz, Abdulrahman Ahmed Hummadi, Hussain Darraj, Yahia Solan, Robert Allan, Fatma Bahsan, Hassan AL Hafaf, Ali Abohadash, Mohammed Badedi and Lindsay Bottoms
Life 2023, 13(6), 1413; https://doi.org/10.3390/life13061413 - 19 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1573
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to undertake a randomized control trial examining the effects of a 12-week home-based physical activity program on Saudi Arabian adults with type 2 diabetes. Sixty-four patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus were recruited from the Jazan Diabetes [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to undertake a randomized control trial examining the effects of a 12-week home-based physical activity program on Saudi Arabian adults with type 2 diabetes. Sixty-four patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus were recruited from the Jazan Diabetes and Endocrinology Center, located in the Jazan region of southwestern Saudi Arabia. Patients were randomly assigned to either control, i.e., usual care (males = 46.9% and females = 53.1%, age  =  45.88 ± 8.51 years, mass  =  76.30 ± 15.16 kg, stature  =  160.59 ± 8.94 cm, body mass index (BMI)  =  29.73 ± 6.24 kg/m2, years since diagnosis  =  8.12 ± 6.22 years) or a home-based physical activity (males = 50% and females = 50%, age  =  42.07 ± 9.72 years, mass  =  74.58 ± 13.67 kg, stature  =  158.94 ± 9.38 cm, BMI  =  29.44 ± 4.38 kg/m2, years since diagnosis  =  12.17 ± 8.38 years) trial arms. The home-based physical activity group was required to undertake aerobic training by increasing their habitual step count by 2000 steps per day and performing resistance training 3 times per week for 12 weeks. The primary outcome was hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), and secondary measures of anthropometrics, blood biomarkers, physical fitness, and patient-reported quality of life outcomes pertinent to type 2 diabetes were measured at timepoints, i.e., baseline, 12 weeks, and 24 weeks (follow-up). Intention-to-treat analyses revealed no significant alterations in the primary outcome (control: baseline = 8.71%, 12-weeks = 8.35%, and follow-up = 8.72%; home-based physical activity: baseline = 8.32%, 12-weeks = 8.06%, and follow-up = 8.39%) between trial arms. However, improvements in psychological wellbeing at follow-up measured using the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 were significantly greater in the home-based physical activity group (baseline = 6.84, 12-weeks = 5.96, and follow-up = 5.00) compared to the control (baseline = 6.81, 12-weeks = 5.73, and follow-up = 8.53). No other statistically significant observations were observed. Home-based physical activity is not effective in mediating improvements in HbA1c levels or secondary hematological, blood pressure, anthropometric, or fitness indices. However, given the link between psychological wellbeing and the etiology/progression of disease activity in type 2 diabetes, home-based physical activity may be effective for tertiary disease management. Future trials should examine the efficacy of relative exercise intensities greater than those in the current study. Full article
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14 pages, 1952 KiB  
Review
Effects of Tai Chi on Postural Control in People with Peripheral Neuropathy: A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis
by Wenhui Mao, Ting Wang, Mengzi Sun, Fangtong Zhang and Li Li
Healthcare 2023, 11(11), 1559; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11111559 - 26 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1166
Abstract
Background: Effects of Tai Chi on people with peripheral neuropathy (PN) are not yet apparent. This systematic review was conducted to evaluate the effects of Tai Chi on postural control in people with PN. Methods: Literature was screened in seven databases for relevant [...] Read more.
Background: Effects of Tai Chi on people with peripheral neuropathy (PN) are not yet apparent. This systematic review was conducted to evaluate the effects of Tai Chi on postural control in people with PN. Methods: Literature was screened in seven databases for relevant randomized controlled trials. The reports and methodological quality were evaluated. A meta-analysis was performed using RevMan5.4 software. Results: Ten reports were included, involving a total of 344 subjects. The meta-analysis found that Tai Chi therapy for people with PN resulted in a smaller sway area, in the double-leg stance with eyes closed test (SMD = −2.43, I2 = 0%), than that observed in the control group, greater distance covered in the six-minute walking test (SMD = −0.46, I2 = 49%) and faster performance in the timed-up-and-go test (SMD = 0.68, I2 = 50%), than the baseline. Conclusions: Tai chi effectively enhanced dynamic postural control in people with PN. However, no better effects on postural control from Tai Chi than from other rehabilitation approaches were observed in this study. Further high-quality trials are needed to better understand Tai Chi’s effects on individuals with PN. Full article
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