For years, physiologists and psychologists have attempted to elucidate the perceptual foundations of perceived exertion and in the process have identified several psychometric variables that mediate the self-report of this experience. Recently, cognitively oriented psychologists have begun to demonstrate that our social and physical environments play a significant role in the subjective ratings of effort expenditure. Additionally, as an offshoot of attribution theory, we are now aware that perceived exertion is a topic relevant to the domain of interpersonal as well as self-perception. The present paper, then, offers an integrative review on research and theory pertinent to the perception of exertion in sport and physical activity. The framework presented emerges largely at a conceptual rather than empirical level and provides several direct challenges for future study.
W. Jack Rejeski
Subjective estimates of physical work intensity are considered of major importance to those concerned with prescription of exercise. This article reviews major theoretical models which might guide research on the antecedents for ratings of perceived exertion (RPE). It is argued that an active rather than passive view of perception is warranted in future research, and a parallel-processing model is emphasized as providing the needed structure for such reconceptualization. Moreover, existing exercise research is reviewed as support for this latter approach and several suggestions are offered with regard to needed empirical study.
Lise Gauvin and W. Jack Rejeski
This research describes the development and validation of a measure designed to assess feeling states that occur in conjunction with acute bouts of physical activity—the Exercise-Induced Feeling Inventory (EFI). The EFI consists of 12 items that capture four distinct feeling states: revitalization, tranquility, positive engagement, and physical exhaustion. The multidimensional structure of the EFI is supported by confirmatory factor analysis. The subscales have good internal consistency, share expected variance with related constructs, are sensitive to exercise interventions, and appear responsive to the different social contexts in which activity may occur. After describing the psychometric properties of the EFI, several directions for theory-based research are proposed.
W. Jack Rejeski and Beth Sanford
The purpose of this research was to examine the hypothesis that feminine-typed females who process exercise-related physiological changes via affective schema overreact to the actual intensity of work. The design involved two groups of women, 20 in each group, who were feminine-typed on the Personal Attributes Questionnaire. One group was shown an intolerant model prior to a bicycle ergo-meter ride, whereas the second group viewed a tolerant model. Results revealed that those females in the intolerant condition experienced negative affect prior to the task, a set that resulted in higher RPEs during ergometry performance when compared to those in the tolerant condition. The data are discussed from the perspective of a parallel processing model of pain and their practical implications for exercise and sport.
W. Jack Rejeski and Elizabeth Kenney
This study examined how exercise endurance was influenced by varying the task complexity of dissociative coping. In Trial 1, 60 subjects were randomly assigned to one of three conditions: a simple cognitive task (SCT), a complex cognitive task (CCT), or a control group (CG). All subjects were instructed to maintain an isometric contraction of 40% maximum on a handgrip dynamometer for as long as possible. Results revealed that subjects in the SCT and CCT conditions had greater endurance than those in the CG; however, varying the complexity of the task made no difference. Trial 2, a within-subjects design, was implemented to examine the potential mediating effects of task preference on cognitive coping. The protocol was identical to Trial 1 except that subjects previously assigned to the SCT condition were given the CCT and vice versa. Upon completion of Trial 2, subjects were asked which coping style they had preferred. A two-way mixed ANO-VA resulted in a significant coping style X preference interaction term. Specifically, subjects who preferred the complex task did equally well in both conditions, whereas subjects who preferred the simple task performed significantly better with the simple than with the complex task.
Edward Gregg and W. Jack Rejeski
This article reviews both human and nonhuman primate research dealing with the social psychobiologic effects of anabolic/androgenic steroids (AS). Descriptive research and anecdotal reports within the realm of sport suggest that AS may have a variety of psychological and behavioral effects including psychotic episodes and increased aggression. Recent investigations with a nonhuman primate model confirm that the effects of AS on psychological states and overt behavior can be quite varied, ranging from those that can be characterized as active (e.g., mania and aggression) to more passive states (e.g., depression and social withdrawal). There are also profound physiological effects of a biobehavioral origin that constitute a risk for cardiovascular disease. The most striking aspect of AS is that the effects of this drug are due to an interaction between its pharmacologic properties and the social milieu.
Michele L. Hobson and W. Jack Rejeski
This investigation examined the role that different doses of acute aerobic exercise (AE) have on psychophysiological responses to mental stress. Eighty women participated in one of four experimental conditions: (a) attention control, (b) 10 min of exercise, (c) 25 min of exercise, or (d) 40 min of exercise. All exercise sessions were performed at 70% of each subject's heart rate reserve. Following each condition, subjects rested for 20 min and then completed a modified Stroop test. Systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and mean arterial pressure (MAP) were monitored at rest and during the stressor. Positive and negative affect were assessed upon entry to the laboratory, postexercise (after the 20-min rest), prior to the stressor, and after a 5-min recovery period. A priori comparisons of the 40-min exercise condition versus the attention control manipulation revealed that a demanding bout of acute AE lowered DBP and MAP reactivity to the Stroop; however, there were no significant linear trends between the dose of exercise and the extent of blood pressure (BP) reactivity. Analysis of the positive and negative affect data revealed no differences between any of the four treatment groups either prior to performing the Stroop task or following a 5-min period of recovery.
Shannon Bezoian, W. Jack Rejeski, and Edward McAuley
The present study examined the role that preexisting efficacy cognitions played in the generation of exercise-induced feeling states during and following an acute bout of exercise. In so doing, the construct validity of a newly developed measure of psychological responses to exercise, the Exercise-Induced Feeling Inventory (EFI; Gauvin & Rejeski, 1993), was investigated. Female undergraduates, classified as having either high or low physical efficacy, engaged in an acute exercise bout and feeling states were recorded prior to, during, and following the activity. More efficacious females maintained a sense of energy during exercise and felt more revitalized and experienced increased positive engagement postexercise than did their less efficacious counterparts. Such findings provide further support for a social-cognitive interpretation of how psychological responses to physical activity might be generated. Results are further discussed in terms of the measurement of exercise-induced feeling states and future applications of the EFI.
W. Jack Rejeski and Lawrence R. Brawley
In adopting attribution theory, researchers in the field of sport psychology have followed the cognitive perspectives characteristic of mainstream investigations in this area. Numerous investigations regarding the self-perception of achievement outcomes in sport reveal this trend. The present article discusses the sport psychological perspective of attribution theory in terms of present and future concerns. First, a critical evaluation of existing approaches to the study of sport attribution is presented. The discussion outlines the typical characteristics of such investigations and their problems, some inherited from psychology and others unique to sport. This critical analysis underscores the narrowness of previous interests. Second, the broad scope of attribution is presented to emphasize the wealth of research problems that could be studied, in addition to those concerning self-focus on achievement outcomes. Third, recent investigations of attribution in sport are briefly described to exemplify new research directions. These examples sketch the importance of subjects' phenomenology, the situational and internal variables affecting attributions, and a developmental comment. If future studies recognize the rich array of social inference problems within the sport context and confront previous investigative errors, the result should be a productive decade of attribution research in sport psychology.
Charles J. Hardy and W. Jack Rejeski
Three experiments are presented that evaluate the feeling scale (FS) as a measure of affect during exercise. In Experiment 1,.subjects were instructed to check adjectives on the MAACL-R that they would associate with either a "good" or a "bad" feeling during exercise. As predicted, discriminant function analysis indicated that the good/bad dimension of the FS appears to represent a core of emotional expression. In Experiment 2, subjects rated how they felt during exercise at a rate of perceived exertion (RPE) of 11, 15, and 19. There was considerable heterogeneity in FS for each given RPE. Moreover, RPEs and FS ratings were only moderately correlated, r= - .56, suggesting that phenomenologically the two constructs are not isomorphic. Experiment 3 involved three 4-min bouts of exercise at 30, 60, and 90% V02max. Assessed were pre- and post-exercise affect as. .well as RPEs, responses to the FS, Ve, RR, and VO2. Results revealed that RPE and the FS were moderately related, but only at easy and hard workloads. FS ratings evidenced greater variability as metabolic demands increased, and RPEs consistently had stronger ties to physiologic cues than responses to the FS. The theoretical and pragmatic implications of these data are discussed.