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Fitness and Stress Levels in Registered Nurses
Gauerke, Ronald D.
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The problem: The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of exercise related fitness on the stress levels of female staff nurses. A convenience sample of 122 nurses participated. Procedure: Stress was measured with the Health Problems Inventory developed by Jones. Fitness was determined by the use of an exercise history questionnaire. Criteria suggested by Cooper was applied to judge subjects as either fit or not fit. Information about other variables which may affect stress was also gathered. Also, subjects were asked to provide their perception of their level of fitness. Findings: This study found a significant relationship (p=<0.05) between fitness and lower stress Additional findings included significantly lower stress in part-timers, those with basic + BSN education, and in nurses who perceived themselves as fit. Conclusions: This study suggests that physical fitness may be of benefit in reducing stress in nurses. Part-time status, perception of fitness, and BSN completion may also reduce stress. Recommendations: Replication of this study in another setting as well as additional studies of activities that may reduce stress are recommended.
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