Several studies have stated the possitive effects of physical exercise over mental health, mainly in clinical samples. However, the results of these experimental estudies might not be generalized to general population. Some authors propose that physical activity could be not really promoting a psychological benefit but, instead, be a consequence of some personal or circumstantial features that would be acting as confusion factors. Personality, as it involves a steady pattern of behaviors, is theorized to arise as one of these factors.
Our objective was to assess the relationship between personality features and voluntary physical activity in a medical resident sample from Hospital 12 de Octubre (Madrid).
High levels of voluntary physical activity will be associated to high scores on extraversion and conscientiousness dimensions after assessing personality.
The project has been conducted as a transversal descriptive study. Sample: 80 first-year medical residents, ages 23 to 40, and no story of mental disorder, nor chronic disabilities. Main variables: voluntary physical activity measured through International Physical Activity Questionary (IPAQ) and personality features assessed through Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO PI-R) as proposed from the 5 factors model (neuroticism, extraversion, openess, agreeableness and conscientiouness).
Frequency measures have been used to describe qualitative variables. Arithmetic mean and standard deviation were used to describe quantitative variables. Pearson's correlation was used in order to study the relationship between scores on physical activity and personality factors.
We present preliminary results from first stage of the study, as well implications are discused.