PhD defence - Mahdi Mohammadi-nezhad

Mahdi Mohammadi-nezhad is defending his PhD thesis

Exercise impact on depressed patients’ self

The impact of exercise on physical self-perception and self-esteem of outpatients with depressive disorders in Denmark

Time

22 January 2013, 10:00

Place

St. Auditorium, Nørre Allé 53, 1., 2200 Copenhagen N

Opponents 

Associate Professor Anne-Marie Elbe (chair), Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Professor Taru Lintunen, University of Jyväskylä, Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences, Finland
 
Professor Egil Martinsen, University of Oslo, Institute of Clinical Medicine, Norway

Supervisors

Professor Reinhard Stelter, Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Professor Merete Nordentoft, Section of Neurology, Psychiatry and Sensory Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

About the thesis

Exercise impact on depressed patients’ self: The impact of exercise on physical self-perception and self-esteem of outpatients with depressive disorders in Denmark. PhD thesis written by Mahdi Mohammadi-nezhad.

In this thesis the focus is on the exercise-self relationship especially physical self in clinical population. Moreover, the thesis was about investigating the association between changes in psychological variables and physical fitness in depressed patients - an interesting and valuable issue and rarely investigated topic that deserves proper attention.

More specifically the focus was on the investigation of the effects of aerobic, anaerobic and relaxation forms of exercise on physical self-perception and self-esteem on Danish depressed patients. This study was designed as part of a larger project called DEMO which was a parallel-group, randomized superiority trial, carried out at the Copenhagen University Hospital in Denmark (Krogh et al., 2007). This dissertation is based on three consecutive studies.

Exercise showed to influence mood through self-esteem and its perceived physical competences in a vertical continuum of specificity-generality, as the paths hypothesized by the models 3-6 (at time 2 and 3) were significant. This influence was also evident through longitudinal trajectories at model 7 through which the skill-development hypothesis was corroborated. The self-enhancement hypothesis also was supported through the top-down model-8 on depressed patients. Moreover, most direct and indirect hypothesized associations between depression, self-esteem, PSPs and exercise behavior were found to be significant, especially the descending effects from time 2 (the post intervention) to time 3 were more vigorous. All of the hypothesized relationships in the longitudinal data were substantiated, and the overall model fitting results of the path analysis provided strong empirical support for both proposed theoretical models (i.e. skill development and the self-enhancement hypotheses).

By showing strong direct associations with a high magnitude of coefficients in PAs with a theoretical basis, this study indicates that there is causal and mediating relationship. Moreover, due to the longitudinal nature of this study and because this study examined mediators at multiple time points (i.e., short and long-term time points), thus causal inferences can be made. These findings extend the previously established theories and models related to global self-esteem in a clinical population.

2013, 202 pages, 100,- d.kr., ISBN 978 87 9177 152 1