Goldstein E, Topitzes J, Brown RL, et al. (2018) Mediational pathways of meditation and exercise on mental health and perceived stress: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Health Psychology.
Abstract: This study investigated the effects of mindfulness and exercise training on indicators of mental health and stress by examining shared mediators of program effects. Community-recruited adults, (N = 413), were randomized into one of three conditions: (a) mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), (b) moderate intensity exercise, or (c) wait-list control. Composite indicator structural equation models estimated direct, indirect and total effects. The results showed that mindfulness-based self-efficacy fulfilled a prominent role in mediating both meditation and exercise program effects. Our findings demonstrated that mindfulness and exercise training share similar mechanisms that can improve global mental health, including adaptive responses to stress.