Leisure-Time Exercise improves the Well-being of Arab Undergraduates’ Students

Kashef Zayed, Ghada Al-Khasawneh, Ehab Omar, Ali Al Shaml, Mahmoud Azab, Ahmad Al Haramleh, Asma Al Attiyah, Nasser Al Rawah, Mohammed Hassan

Abstract


This study aims to evaluate the leisure-time exercise and mental well-being of undergraduate Arab students, and to explore the effect of exercise at leisure on mental health. To achieve these goals, a self-reported exercise scale and Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale (W-EMWBS) were administered on a sample consisted of 703 undergraduate Arab students registered in some universities in four Arab countries (318 males, and 385 females; m age = 19.97 ± 1.86) Descriptive statistical showed that the participants had good levels of mental well-being and it also showed that only 26% of them regularly engage in sports activities according to the global recommended health standards, while 39% of them do not practice sports at all. Two-ways Analysis of Variance explored that there was no significant effect of the interaction of gender with exercise on mental-well-being (F (2,655) = 1.799, p =.166), but revealed that participants who used to engage in different levels of exercise and physical activities, during their leisure times, have better levels of mental well-being compared to their physically inactive counterparts (p =.000), but there were no significant gender differences in the level of mental well-being (p =.079). The study concluded that practicing sports in leisure time, even at limited rates, is associated with a high level of mental health and recommended the necessity of providing more support for sports activity at Arab universities due to the effect of sport on promoting mental well-being.

Keywords


Leisure time; Exercise; Mental Well-being; University.

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