Other Directedness and Impaired Limits: The Impact of Early Maladaptive Schema on Exercise Dependence

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Rankin, R. M., Read, P. A., Walker, B. R., & Rankin, P. M. (2019). Other directedness and impaired limits: The impact of early maladaptive schema on exercise dependence. Current Psychology, Pre-published 25 January 2019, doi:10.1007/s12144-019-0139-1

ISSN: 1046-1310


110317 Physiotherapy| 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology| 170114 Sport and Exercise Psychology

Avondale Research Centre

Lifestyle Research Centre

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While a sedentary lifestyle is a one of the most pressing health concern in western society, there appears to be a minority of individuals who exercise compulsively and in excess. Relatively little research has examined the factors leading exercise to transition from a healthy and sociable habit to one that is potentially pathological, addictive, and physically damaging. The present study examined the possible impact ofearly maladaptive schema (EMS) and implicit self-esteem on exercise dependence (EXD) in a cohort ofAustralian cyclists. A total of136 cyclists completed the Young Schema Questionnaire Short-Form Revised, Self-esteem Implicit Association Test and Exercise Dependence Scale Revised to assess EMS, implicit self-esteem and for EXD symptomology. Early maladaptive schema, specifically the domains Bother directedness^ and Bimpaired limits^, accounted for a significant proportion of the variability in self-reported EXD symptomology. Additionally, a significant proportion of this cohort exhibited EXD symptomology irrespective of socio-demographic characteristics. These findings indicate that individuals who have an excessive external focus on the desires and needs of others, and/or are unable to set appropriate internal limits, may be at higher risk of developing EXD symptomology than individuals with lower levels of specific EMS. Therefore, understanding the relationship between EMS and EXD may aid in understanding the etiology ofEXD and the development of intervention strategies.


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