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Reciprocal within-day associations between incidental affect and exercise: An EMA study

Emerson, Jessica A.; Dunsiger, Shira; Williams, David M.

Psychology & health. Volume 33:Issue 1 (2018); pp 130-143 -- Routledge

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  • Title:
    Reciprocal within-day associations between incidental affect and exercise: An EMA study
  • Author: Emerson, Jessica A.;
    Dunsiger, Shira;
    Williams, David M.
  • Found In: Psychology & health. Volume 33:Issue 1 (2018); pp 130-143
  • Journal Title: Psychology & health
  • Subjects: Attitude to Health--Periodicals; Psychology--Periodicals; Public Opinion--Periodicals; Clinical health psychology--Periodicals; exercise--incidental affect--ecological momentary assessment; Dewey: 150
  • Rights: legaldeposit
  • Publication Details: Routledge
  • Abstract: Abstract :

    Previous research suggests that how people feel throughout the course of a day (i.e. incidental affect) is predictive of exercise behaviour. A mostly separate literature suggests that exercise can lead to more positive incidental affect.

    Objective: This study examines the potential reciprocal effects of incidental affect and exercise behaviour within the same day.

    Design: Fifty-nine low-active (exercise <60 min/week), overweight (BMI: 25.0–39.9) adults (ages 18–65) participated in a six-month print-based exercise promotion programme.

    Main outcome measures: Ecological momentary assessment was used to record self-reported exercise sessions in real time and incidental affective valence (feeling good/bad) as assessed by the 11-point Feeling Scale at random times throughout the day.

    Results: Use of a within-subjects cross-lagged, autoregressive model showed that participants were more likely to exercise on days when they experienced more positive incidental affect earlier in the day ( b  = .58, SE = .10, p  < .01), and participants were more likely to experience more positive incidental affect on days when they had exercised ( b  = .26, SE = .03, p  < .01), with the former association significantly stronger than the latter ( t  = 23.54, p  < .01).

    Conclusion: The findings suggest a positive feedback loop whereby feeling good and exercising are reciprocally influential within the course of a day.


  • Identifier: System Number: LDEAvdc_100054899512.0x000001; Journal ISSN: 0887-0446; 10.1080/08870446.2017.1341515
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Physical Description: Electronic
  • Shelfmark(s): ELD Digital store

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