Jackson (2022) Aquatic exercise and mental health: A scoping review

Summary: Aquatic Exercise and Its Impact on Mental Health

Overview and Objectives

This scoping review by Jackson et al. aims to summarize the current research on the effects of aquatic exercise on mental health. It focuses on the types of interventions, measurement tools used, and populations that benefit most from aquatic exercise for mental health management​​.


A systematic search was conducted across PubMed, SPORTDiscus, PsycInfo, and Google Scholar. The review included studies observing the effects of aquatic exercises on mental health parameters, following PRISMA guidelines. The primary mental states assessed were depression, anxiety, mood, self-esteem, and psychological well-being​​.


From 1635 articles, 23 met the inclusion criteria, with 12 being randomized controlled trials. The findings generally indicate that aquatic exercise is effective in generating positive changes in mental health. Various forms of aquatic activities like winter swimming, leisure swimming, competitive swimming, and aquatic aerobics were evaluated​​.


The review concludes that aquatic exercise can be a promising therapy for mental health management. However, it recommends further research to establish the long-term effects of this intervention on mental health. The scoping review highlights the need for more comprehensive studies in this field to solidify the findings.

Keyphrase: “Aquatic Exercise and Mental Health Benefits”

Important Keywords: aquatic exercise, mental health, depression, anxiety, mood, self-esteem, psychological well-being, randomized controlled trials, winter swimming, leisure swimming, competitive swimming, aquatic aerobics.


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