Title: “Systematic Review: Evaluating The Effectiveness of Aerobic, Resistance, and Combined Aerobic and Resistance Training on Positive and Negative Symptoms in Individuals with Schizophrenia”
Supervisor: Dr. Darren Warburton (Kinesiology)
Second Reader: Dr. Shannon Bredin (Kinesiology)
Objective: Schizophrenia is a severe mental illness characterized by a combination of psychiatric symptoms including, positive, negative, and cognitive symptoms, which can have a significant impact on daily living, social interactions, and functional capacity. Therefore, the purpose of this systematic review is to examine the effectiveness of current exercise interventions using aerobic, resistance, or combined aerobic and resistance training on reducing positive and negative symptoms in individuals with schizophrenia.
Methods: Electronic database searches included, EMBASE (Ovid), MEDLINE (Ovid), and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials. Each database was thoroughly searched to identify all potential studies. A methodological quality evaluation using the Modified Downs and Black Quality Assessment was used for all of the included studies
Results: A total of 1545 potential articles were found. After screening, 19 studies were included that met the required eligibility criteria. Twelve interventions included the use of aerobic training, 2 interventions investigated resistance training, and 5 interventions included a combination of aerobic and resistance training. Intensity and duration of exercise training appeared to be the key factors on whether symptom reduction had reached statistical significance.
Conclusion: Evidence suggests that incorporating at least 90 minutes of moderate-to-high intensity exercise per week proved to have a greater prevalence of significant improvement in symptoms. While the results of this systematic review are promising, further research is warranted in order to determine which modality of exercise is truly effective in reducing positive and negative symptoms.