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What evidence is there to support the idea that exercise can add ‘Life to years’ (Department of health, 1993) by improving the quality of life?

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What evidence is there to support the idea that exercise can add 'Life to years' (Department of health, 1993) by improving the quality of life? 'Quality of life' is a subjective well being of an individual. When an individual has high levels of life satisfaction, an absence of a negative affect such as depression or bad mood, and a presence of a positive affect such as a happy home life or work place then they are said to have quality of life. It has also been stated by Cambell, Converse and Rogers in 1976 "Quality of life emphasises subjective experience of your perceptions and needs of the spirit, rather than objective conditions of life and affluence". It has been discovered through some research that exercise improves quality of life. It is a proven fact that exercise directly influences health on a physiological basis, whereas there is some dispute whether there is a psychological influence to exercise due to the huge amount of research that has been done on the subject. Most of the research indicates that there is a psychological influence to exercise that improves quality of life. There are additional factors that must be taken into account when looking at quality of life. Personality factors e.g. self-esteem, extrovert, introvert has been found to influence quality of life by researchers such as Diener and Lucas, 1999. ...read more.


Person Enjoyment is also a product of physical activity. In 1991, Csikszentmihalyi studied personal enjoyment and quoted that it "is an optimal experience of high quality that serves as an end in itself". The studies provided results that stated the positive affect of exercise had on an individual was believed to be a by-product of personal enjoyment. Personal enjoyment is said to occur more in autoletic or intrinsically enjoyable activities and when someone has personal enjoyment, there are facial expressions and physiological reactions that accompany it. There are many sources of enjoyment that can be found within sport or physical activity, which will influence quality of life. There are intrinsic, extrinsic and social factors that occur in youths whilst participating in physical activity and there are huge numbers of factors such as, distraction from work, 'flow' experiences and positive feedback that cause personal enjoyment in adults. All these factors facilitate quality of life. Peak moments in exercise have also been said to improve quality of life. Work by Csikszentmihalyi in 1991 and 1997 suggests that peak moments in exercise such as 'flow' or peak performance or experience, are rewarding and fulfilling to the individual. Peak experiences can include loss of self-consciousness and can give a perception of control to the individual. These intrinsic feelings can give a person personal enjoyment and satisfaction, which can relieve stress and give a person a positive mood, all which improve quality of life. ...read more.


Rest on the other day. Reasons - non-competitive because if the individual takes it too seriously it could be detrimental to quality of life because it could cause stress, may create a bad mood and no enjoyment will be gained. Must be interesting to the individual so that personal enjoyment is achieved and there is an optimal environment for peak moments. Rest on the other day to recuperate and relax. * Every week the intensity of each exercise apart from the weekend will increase slightly. Goals must be attainable and realistic, but challenging. Increase exercise times by 5 minutes every week and increase exercise repetitions by 5 every week. Reasons - only small increases in intensity because failure to meet goals will lead to stress but meeting challenging goals will give personal accomplishment and increased self-efficacy. * The PMR could be taken further into a yoga class dependant on the time availability. * At the end of the first month, the exercise intensity should remain constant as it is only for health reasons the exercise is being undertaken, not to become an athlete. The exercise schedule is fairly intense for a 50 year old but on average there is only 20-25 mins every day. This time can be found in any individual's life but there is no need to increase the time spent on exercising, as the allocated schedule is the maximum to achieve the required goal. The most important thing is that the individual does some aerobic exercise and takes personal enjoyment in an activity. - 1 - ...read more.

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