Impact of physical activity on mood after TBI

Brain Inj. 2009 Mar;23(3):203-12. doi: 10.1080/02699050802695574.


Primary objective: To examine the effect of a physical activity programme on the mood states of individual's with a traumatic brain injury.

Research design: Participants were randomly assigned to an experimental (aquatic physical activity intervention) (n = 8) or control group (n = 8).

Methods and procedures: The intervention group completed an 8-week aquatic programme consisting of 24 sessions. The control group completed a vocational rehabilitation class for the same number of weeks and sessions. Participants within the physical activity and control group completed the Profile of Mood States (POMS) pre- and post-programme. The POMS measures six dimensions of mood including tension, depression, anger, vigour, fatigue and confusion. An ANOVA was completed to examine between and within group differences pre- and post-programme.

Main outcomes and results: Results for the experimental group indicated significant differences and large effect sizes for tension, depression, anger, vigour, fatigue and confusion. No significant differences were found for the control group across all variables.

Conclusions: As research has shown increased disturbances in psychosocial states following a brain injury as well as higher rates of depression, results have important implications for individuals involved in rehabilitation, as physical activity can positively influence mood.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology
  • Adult
  • Affect / physiology*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anxiety Disorders / psychology
  • Anxiety Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • Brain Injuries / psychology
  • Brain Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / rehabilitation*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motor Activity / physiology*