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Date Permissions Signed


Date of Award


Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)


Health and Human Development

First Advisor

Knutzen, Kathleen

Second Advisor

Row, Brandi

Third Advisor

Lindsey, Billie J.


Depression is a serious illness that causes suffering in all aspects of one's life. Exercise has previously shown to decrease depressive symptoms in adults. This study investigated the length of exercise history and depressive symptoms in community-dwelling older adults. Subjects were grouped, according to length of exercise history, into five groups: non-exercisers; started exercise within the past year; exercise history between one and five years; exercise history between five and ten years; exercise history longer than ten years. Subjects completed the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE), the UCLA Loneliness Scale, and the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS). The results indicated that there was a significant difference in CES-D across the groups (p < 0.05) and subjects with the longest exercise history (greater than 5 years) had the lowest depressive symptoms. There was no significant difference between the groups for the UCLA Loneliness Scale and the PANAS. These results support previous research that subjects with a long-term exercise history have lower depressive symptoms scores than those with shorter or no exercise history.





Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Exercise for older people; Depression in old age; Exercise--Psychological aspects




masters theses




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