First Advisor

Gerald Guthrie

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.) in Psychology




Exercise -- Physiological aspects, Stress (Physiology), Stress (Psychology), Self-confidence



Physical Description

1 online resource (29 p.)


This study examined the effects of steady, graded, and no exercise on stress reduction, and the effects of self-confidence on stress reduction through exercise. Seventy-two male and female volunteers from the Portland area, ranging in age from 19-49 years, served as subjects. Subjects completed pre and post measures of the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale and the state portion of the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. Subjects were divided into two experimental and one control group matched according to age and exercise history. The control group kept its exercise at a minimum for eight weeks. Exercise programs for the two experimental groups consisted of twelve minute work bouts on ergometers three times per week, for eight weeks. Work bouts were at a seventy percent maximum heart rate. Due to attrition and a random drop of subjects in the control group, thirty-one subjects remained. Analyses found a significant stress reduction for the steady exercise group (t = -2.81,p = .017), but not for the graded or no exercise group. Stress reduction was negatively correlated with self-confidence, though not significantly, and no significant differences were found between the self-confidence scores. A significant correlation was found between pre-stress scores and preself- conf idence scores (r = -.306,p = .04).


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