Exercise intensity and self-efficacy effects on anxiety reduction in healthy, older adults

Jeffrey A. Katula, Bryan J. Blissmer, Edward McAuley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of the present study was to examine the effects of varying exercise intensities and changes in self-efficacy on anxiety reduction in a sample of healthy, older adults. Eighty older adults from a randomized controlled exercise trial participated in this study and completed measures of self-efficacy and the State Anxiety Inventory (SAI) prior to and following light-, moderate-, and high-intensity exercise. Latent growth curve modeling analyses revealed that although anxiety was reduced following the light- intensity condition, no significant changes in anxiety occurred following the moderate-intensity condition, and anxiety increased following the high- intensity condition. In addition, changes in self-efficacy were related to anxiety responses only in the moderate-intensity condition. An analysis of SAI items indicated that although the light-intensity condition resulted in decreased arousal and anxiousness, the high-intensity condition resulted in increased arousal and decreased anxiousness. These results are discussed in terms of social cognitive theory and the appropriateness of the $Al for use in exercise settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-247
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1999


  • Aging
  • Anxiety reduction
  • Dose-response
  • Self-efficacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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