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The Relationship of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Physical Activity and the Mental Health of NCAA Collegiate Baseball Players

Colombi, Robert (2021) The Relationship of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Physical Activity and the Mental Health of NCAA Collegiate Baseball Players. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The COVID-19 pandemic could pose many issues expanding beyond the direct effects of those infected with the disease. One adverse effect of the pandemic could be on mental health. While there have been many studies attempting to identify possible effects on mental health, there is no current research identifying its presence. Physical activity is one potential variable that could influence mental health, as available research shows a strong relationship. NCAA collegiate baseball athletes are a population where these effects should be investigated, especially as the prevalence of mental health conditions continue to rise. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship of the COVID-19 pandemic, level of physical activity, and the mental health of NCAA collegiate baseball players. A cross-sectional, survey-based design was created to achieve this purpose. Current mental health was evaluated in a questionnaire and change in physical activity across three time periods (current [March 2021 – April 2021], September 2020 – December 2020, April 2020 – August 2020) were compared to a reference period of September 2019 – December 2019. A total of 19 subjects participated in this study with 16 complete responses, resulting in an average age of 20.58 ± 1.66 yrs. Subjects reported symptoms of mental health conditions/topics, with an increase in those currently experiencing anxiety (50%), depression (33%), sleep issues (61%), and energy level concerns (61%) compared to available research. Subjects level of physical activity remained mostly the same across all three time periods. Proportion of subjects reporting a mental health condition/topic did not show a statistically significant relationship with the proportion of subject participation in various levels of physical activity. Future research should continue investigating the relationship of mental health and physical activity in relation to the pandemic and the importance of establishing a baseline mental health survey.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Colombi, RobertRPC22@pitt.eduRPC22
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMurray,
Committee MemberAllison,
Committee MemberLovalekar,
Date: 23 July 2021
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 10 June 2021
Approval Date: 23 July 2021
Submission Date: 7 July 2021
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 163
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences > Sports Medicine and Nutrition
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: N/A
Date Deposited: 23 Jul 2021 14:40
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2021 14:40


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