USC leads Australian study into exercise during pandemic

Published:

NOTE: This article is older than 12 months

Health science experts from USC have been chosen to lead the Australian arm of a study into how physical activity levels have been affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The collaborative international study will canvass how the changes may have affected people’s mental health and overall wellbeing in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Ireland and Australia. 

Dr Daniel Wadsworth, Dr Mia Schaumberg and Associate Professor Chris Askew from USC are leading the Australian arm of the study and say the results will be used to help inform strategies to encourage physical activity during similar events in the future.

Dr Wadsworth, who is the chief investigator for the Australian research, said many people had experienced disruptions to their daily life due to government restrictions to combat the spread of COVID-19.

“We will be interested to see how people have been affected in different ways,” Dr Wadsworth said.

“For example, someone normally commuting to work on their bike may find they are now exercising less, but for others the reverse might be true, and they now have more time to exercise with their family.”

He said the research team was also eager to draw links between how changes to physical activity might impact on mental health and wellbeing. 

“Exercise is medicine. It reduces your risk of chronic diseases and improves mental health and it’s something that’s fairly easy to take up if it’s accessible.

“I’m particularly interested in how we can improve accessibility to exercise opportunities for different sectors of society, for the elderly for instance, in situations like this where restrictions are in place.

“If we can boost physical activity, at an individual level we would see enhanced levels of wellbeing and at a societal level, we would see less burden of care, opening up resources to be directed where they are most needed.” 

The team will also look into mental impacts such as depression and anxiety, following up with surveys after restrictions are lifted.

Dr Schaumberg said another goal of the study was to compare how different levels of restrictions in each country had impacted people differently.

“It is going to be particularly interesting to look at whether Australians, who have experienced a lower level of restrictions than residents in the UK and New Zealand, have been more active during this period, or whether people are making the most of exercise opportunities when there are restrictions on how long they can be outside,” she said.

“This is the first time we have seen restrictions like this in place in these countries, so it is an important opportunity for us to understand how people can be supported to stay active for their mental and physical health in future periods of restriction.” 

Researchers are seeking participants over 18 years of age to take part in a 10 to 15-minute online survey, that could lead to follow-up surveys once the restrictions are lifted. A link to the survey is at https://bit.ly/35mhmOQ  
 

 
Community Coronavirus COVID-19 Health & Wellness Science & Research Sport and Fitness Surveys & Your Say University & TAFE
Social:   

University Of The Sunshine Coast : View Full Profile
90 Sippy Downs Drive, Sippy Downs
07 5430 1234
University Of The Sunshine Coast
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
Sixty million years of separation leave mark on the eucalypt genome 10 May 2021 | A new eucalypt genome has been assembled and publicly released following a decade-long project involving 22 scientists from Australia, USA and Brazil, including Associate Professor David Lee from USC Australia’s... More information...
Will taps into power of gaming for career inspiration 19 April 2021 | Gympie gaming enthusiast Will Averillo is so impressed by the power and artistry of computer games that he’s taken his pursuit of a career in the rapidly growing game design industry to the next level. More information...
USC to stage 20 graduation ceremonies 01 April 2021 | USC will stage 20 graduation ceremonies next week to celebrate the academic achievements of students who have completed degrees over the past two years. More information...
Bright prospects for Rubie and her graduate family 06 April 2021 | USC’s week of graduation ceremonies from 6 April will be a quadruple celebration for new Maroochydore State High School teacher and double USC graduate Rubie Orman. More information...
University transforms life of Chancellor’s medallist 05 April 2021 | From interning at the Australian Embassy in Japan to graduating with near perfect results, Raymart Walker says his experience at USC has gone beyond all expectations. More information...
Disadvantage and adversity behind Qld’s high sudden infant death rate 17 February 2021 | Queensland’s first large-scale study of all sudden infant deaths to date has identified key factors contributing to the state’s persistently high annual death rate of babies. More information...
Oral ketamine doses promising against chronic suicidality, study finds 08 February 2021 | A new study from USC Australia has found that oral doses of ketamine administered in a clinical setting can provide a rapid-acting treatment for chronic suicidality. More information...
Back to uni helps businesswoman banish COVID déjà vu 12 January 2021 | While the resurgence of COVID-19 is causing deja vu for many business owners, Fiona Roberts is looking forward to “another amazing year” in 2021. More information...
USC Clinical Trials seeks healthy volunteers for malaria study 05 January 2021 | USC Clinical Trials has partnered with the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane to investigate whether an approved anti-malarial drug can be used more extensively to counter malaria – a disease... More information...
Driller digs deep for career as doctor 06 January 2021 | A former fly in-fly out mines driller who recently graduated from USC with a Psychology degree is taking his career change even further in 2021 after getting into medicine. More information...


comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service