Monday, May 9, 2011

Whats the Boundary Between Exercise and Exercise Dependence?

In my travels as a Clinical Psychology Lecturer I came accross a disorder known as 'Exercise Dependence' is the academic literature....which is pretty interesting...see below...

Exercise Dependence Criteria: The criteria for exercise dependence are based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders-IV (DSM-IV, 1994) criteria for substance dependence as well as previous research (e.g., Ogden et al., 1997; Veale, 1995). While the DSM-IV does not have specific criteria for execise dependence, the criteria for substance dependence were used as the framework. Exercise dependence is conceptualized and measured as a multidimensional maladaptive pattern of exercise, leading to clinically significant impairment or distress, as manifested by three or more of the following:
(1) Tolerance: need for increased amounts of exercise to achieve desired effect; diminished effect with continued use of same amount of exercise
(2) Withdrawal: characteristic withdrawal symptoms for exercise (e.g., anxiety, fatigue) or exercise is taken to relieve or avoid symptoms
(3) Intention Effect: exercise is often taken in larger amounts or over a longer period than was intended
(4) Lack of Control: a persistent desire or unsuccessful effort to cut down or control exercise
(5) Time: a great deal of time is spent in activities necessary to obtain exercise (e.g., physical activity vacations)
(6) Reduction in Other Activities: social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of exercise
(7) Continuance: exercise is continued despite knowledge of having a persisting/recurring physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the exercise (e.g., continued running despite injury).

What do you think? How many can you tick off? It made me think about my recent frustration with trying to increase my Kilometres after my marathon....should I? Am I entering into dependence territory?

Fortunately I think I can tick off 1.3.4. and 7. as not relating to me, although the others i am happy to accept.

7. is a particularly strong reminder not to run as much when injured...

If your interested check out the book above too

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