The effects of exercise participation, self-perceived fitness level, and dispositional hardiness for promoting stress resistance were examined in a sample of 373 college students. Self-report measures of stressful life experience and recent physical illness were positively correlated, and fitness and hardiness were negatively correlated with illness as expected. Multiple regression analyses indicated that neither fitness nor hardiness provided a stress-moderator effect because neither was found to significantly interact with stress in the prediction of illness scores. Structural equation analyses suggested that hardiness may affect health indirectly by first influencing either the occurrence or subjective interpretation of stressful life events. No direct effect on health was found for exercise participation, although exercise may reduce illness indirectly by improving fitness. Implications for the multivariate modeling of proposed stress-resistance-enhancing effects are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science