Online Program

Examining the association between emotional intelligence and physical activity among college students

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Amir Bhochhibhoya, PhD (C), MBA, CHES, Department of Health and Exercise Science, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
Alexandra Sampson, MS, CHES, Department of Health & Exercise Science, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
Manoj Sharma, PhD, Health Promotion & Education, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH
Paul Wesley Branscum, PhD, RD, Department of Health and Exercise Science, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
Emotions are a fundamental and significant aspect of human nature. Emotional Intelligence (EI) is a relatively new concept, and refers to one's ability to be self-aware, self-motivated, express empathy, and manage personal emotions and outside relationships. Previous studies have reported a high degree of associations between EI and a number of determinants of mental health, however few studies have reported upon its association with aspects of physical health, such as physical activity. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate EI, and explore its relationship with physical activity among a sample of college students. A convenience sample of two hundred and fifty-one students (Male=134, Female=117) from a southwestern University participated in this study, and completed the EI based survey that contained sub-scales for self-awareness, self-motivation, empathy, managing emotions and managing relationships. All sub-scales were evaluated for face and content validity using a panel of experts, and appeared to have adequate internal consistency reliability, except for the self-awareness sub-scale. Significant correlations were found between moderate to vigorous physical activity and self-motivation (p=0.008) and managing relationships (p=0.014), but not for the other EI sub-scales. Results suggest that EI is moderately related with physical activity among college students. Implications for practice and suggestions for future research will be presented.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance of emotional intelligence among college populations. Describe the process of developing an instrument that measures five constructs of emotional intelligence. Discuss the associations between physical activity and emotional intelligence among college students.

Keyword(s): Mental Health, Physical Activity

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have assisted in conceptualizing the study, data collection and analyzing the data.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.