Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Veterans Crisis Line Badge
Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Kern RS, Reddy LF, Cohen AN, Young AS, Green MF. Effects of aerobic exercise on cardiorespiratory fitness and social functioning in veterans 40 to 65 years old with schizophrenia. Psychiatry Research. 2020 Sep 1; 291:113258.
PubMed logo Search for Abstract from PubMed
(This link leaves the website of VA HSR&D.)

Abstract: The usual physical activity level of people with chronic histories of schizophrenia is very low. In this pilot study, we examined the effects of an easy to implement aerobic exercise (AE) program on cardiorespiratory fitness and social functioning in 54 Veterans aged 40-65 years old with schizophrenia. Participants were randomized 2:1 to AE (36 forty-minute sessions conducted 3 times per week over 12 weeks) versus a non-aerobic stretching exercise condition conducted under the same regimen and timeframe. Cardiorespiratory fitness improved significantly within the AE group (p < .0001), and differed significantly from the comparison group (p < .02; Cohen's d = .41). Trend-level improvements were seen in social functioning within the AE group (p < .09) and showed a similar trend level difference in the between-group comparison (p < .06; Cohen's d = .35). Improvements in social functioning were significantly related to gains in cardiorespiratory fitness (r = .42; p < .01). AE effects on other physical and mental health indices were also examined. Overall, the AE intervention was well-tolerated, safe, and showed low rates of attrition after the commencement of training. Our findings indicate it is feasible to improve cardiorespiratory fitness in this clinical population, and there is suggestive evidence that the interventions aimed to do so may also benefit social functioning.

Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.