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Journal of Men's Health ; 19(3):53-64, 2023.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2321804


Despite their effectiveness in minimizing the spread of infection, movement restrictions adopted during the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic have not been without their health-related consequences, including decreases in physical activity and increases in sedentary behavior. This study aimed to investigate differences in stress and sense of community among Korean citizens in various age groups according to the degree of their participation in physical activity during the COVID-19 pandemic. We analyzed data collected during the Social Survey of Busan Metropolitan City 2020, the population of which included all household members over the age of 15. Data for a total of 33,082 participants (male = 15,129;female = 17,953) were extracted using a two-stage cluster sampling method. Age, stress level, and sense of community were analyzed using independent t-tests, while the frequency of participation in physical activity was analyzed using a Mann-Whitney U test. Differences in stress level and community consciousness according to the frequency of physical activity were examined via multivariate analysis of variance. Variables exhibiting significant differences were evaluated for differences between groups through Scheffe's post hoc analysis. First, stress levels were higher among female adolescents than male adolescents. Among adults and older adults, men exhibited higher overall stress levels than women, whereas sense of community was stronger in women than men. Second, male adolescents in the regular physical activity participation group showed lower levels in some factors of stress than those in the nonparticipating group. Finally, a higher frequency of participation in physical activity among adults and older adults was associated with lower stress and higher sense of community, regardless of gender. In conclusion, regular participation in physical activity should be considered when designing strategies for managing stress and promoting social relationships at the national and individual levels during COVID-19 and any similar pandemics in the future.Copyright ©2023 The Author(s). Published by MRE Press.

Iranian Journal of Public Health ; 52(2):371-380, 2023.
Article in English | Scopus | ID: covidwho-2227818


Background: This study aimed to verify the effectiveness of a virtual reality-based physical education program on physical fitness among Korean elementary school students. Methods: The study, conducted at a public school in South Korea in the second semester of 2022, included experimental and control groups of 45 participants each (N=90). All participants underwent physical fitness tests before and after the experiment. The students assigned to the experimental group participated in the virtual reality-based physical education program three times a week for a total of 8 weeks (40 minutes per ses-sion), while those assigned to the control group did not participate in any exercise program. The effect size was confirmed using Cohen's d, and a two-way repeated measures analysis of variance was used to analyze changes in physical factors before and after the experiment for each group. Results: Among the male participants, we observed significant differences in overall health-related physical fitness, cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, and power between the experimental and control groups (P<0.05). Among the female participants, we observed significant differences in overall health-related physical fitness, cardiorespiratory endurance, flexibility, and muscular strength and endurance between the groups (P<0.05). Conclusion: Virtual reality-based physical education may help to improve indicators of physical fitness among elementary school students, especially among those who have experienced deterioration of physical fitness during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our results, therefore, highlight the need to establish virtual reality-based physical education facilities at the elementary school level in Korea. © 2023 Bae. Published by Tehran University of Medical Sciences.