Physical Activity Participation, Quality of Life, and Behavioral Health Disorders for Veterans with PTSD


The growing prevalence of behavioral health disorders in veterans has triggered a wide-spread effort to identify and provide complementary interventions. This study investigated physical activity as a complementary treatment option for veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for recreational therapy (RT) programs. A correlational survey research design was used to examine relationships between participation in three types of physical activity (traditional indoor fitness, outdoor adventure activity, and mind-body practices) and four psychosocial measures for veterans with PTSD (depression, anxiety, health-related quality of life [HRQoL], and substance use). A total of 102 participants completed the online survey. Results indicated that the frequency and duration of traditional indoor fitness activities and outdoor adventure activities were significantly associated with higher HRQoL, lower reoccurrence of substance use risk, substance use, and depression. Implications for the use of physical activity in recreational therapy for veterans with behavioral health disorders and future research studies were presented.


Recreation Management and Policy

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Therapeutic Recreation Journal


Sagamore Publishing LLC

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