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South African Journal for Research in Sport, Physical Education and Recreation

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Effects of regular aerobic exercise on physical characteristics, body image satisfaction and self-efficacy of middle-aged women

N Vurgun

Abstract


This study examined the effects of regular aerobic exercise on physical variables, body image satisfaction and self-efficacy levels of sedentary women. An exercise group and a control group consisted of 25 and 20 middle-aged women respectively. The exercise group participated in a 14-week aerobic training programme, whereas the control group did not participate in any special kind of physical activity. In addition to administering the Body Image Satisfaction Questionnaire and the Self-efficacy Scale, anthropometric variables were assessed before the commencement of the study and again immediately afterwards. The data were analysed by a one-way ANCOVA. The main results revealed significant decreases in body mass, body fat, waist-to-hip ratio, as well as significant improvements in body image satisfaction and self-efficacy scores, with large effect sizes after the intervention for the exercise group. Regular aerobic exercise had a positive effect on body image satisfaction and self-efficacy of middle-aged women. This could possibly be due to improvements in their physical characteristics that resulted from the exercise programme.

Key words: Aerobic exercise; Body fat; Body Mass Index; Body image satisfaction; Self-efficacy.




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