Miller, P. C., Bailey, E. K., Blakeslee, R. L., & Hall, E. E. (2006). The influence of various distraction stimuli on affective responses to cycle ergometry. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 38(5), Supplement abstract 999.

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This study compared individuals’ affective responses to exercise under visual, auditory, and no distractions. Ss (N = 29) performed 30-minute cycle ergometry exercises, a control condition with no stimuli and two test conditions; one supplemented with a video and a second involving music. Both potentially distracting stimuli were self-selected and administered in a random order. The Activation Deactivation Adjective Check List, the Feeling Scale, and the Felt-Arousal Scale were given to Ss before, immediately after, 10 minutes after, and 60 minutes after the exercise.

The Feeling Scale, the Felt-Arousal Scale, tense arousal, and energetic arousal changed over time. The Feeling Scale was significantly higher for the music and video groups than the no-stimulation condition. Tense arousal was significantly lower for the video group when compared to the other two conditions.

Implication. When given a distraction, an exerciser may experience greater feelings of pleasure when exercising with some type of distraction. Video distraction appears to be superior to music because it affects both pleasurable feelings and tension during exercise.

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