This brief is about the connection between physical activity and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in veterans. In policy and practice, service members who experienced combat should have high levels of physical activity in order to reduce the possibility of developing PTSD, clinicians should mention the importance of physical activity for mental health to service members, as well as recommend alternatives for veterans who are unable to do high levels of physical activity. The VA should implement and promote fitness programs for service members and veterans to lower the possibility of developing PTSD, and policymakers should fund physical activity programs for veterans. Suggestions for future research include oversampling individuals with PTSD to discover how physical activity affects less common PTSD symptoms, using reporting techniques besides self-reporting, and differentiating between disability type and permanence of disability.
LeardMann, C. A., Kelton, M. L., Smith, B., Littman, A. J., Boyko, E. J., Wells, T. S., Smith, T. C., & Millennium Cohort Study Team (2011). Prospectively assessed post-traumatic stress disorder and associated physical activity. Public Health Reports, 126(3), 371–383. https://doi.org/10.1177/003335491112600311
Mental Disorders | Military and Veterans Studies | Psychiatry and Psychology | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Trauma
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Physical activity, Military personnel
Post-traumatic stress disorder; Exercise; Soldiers
Government and Community Services
Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University
Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University, "Research Brief: "Prospectively Assessed Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Associated Physical Activity"" (2013). Institute for Veterans and Military Families. 289.
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