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Changes in affective responses to physical exercise-induced by sleep deprivation


It is well established that sleep deprivation (SD) impairs mental health and exercise performance (EXP). However, little is known about how SD alters affective responses (AR) to physical exercise. This understanding can be an important part of a puzzle to explain the mechanisms behind the adverse effects of SD on EXP and how physical exercise can be an instrument to alleviate the damage caused by SD.


Investigate the effects of SD on AR after different aerobic exercises intensities.


Ten healthy males, regular joggers (32.5 ± 7.5 yrs; 71.33 ± 8.09kg; 173,9 ± 5.91 cm; 23.61 ± 2.76 kg/m2), were completed an experimental crossover design comprising a regular sleep (RS) and 36h of sleep deprivation (36SD) conditions with 20 days washout. The subjects were submitted to 30 min of moderate continuous exercise (30MIN) followed a 3-km Time-Trial (3KmTT) test in a treadmill and answered the Subjective Exercise Experiences Scale (SEES) at four different times: baseline (BAS), after 30MIN (AF30), after 3KmTT (AFTT) and 30 minutes resting (AFRT). The three-factor of SEES was analyzed: Positive Well-Being (PWB), Psychological Distress (PSY) (corresponding to the positive and negative poles associated with mental health, respectively), and Fatigue (FAT). To compare the mean scores, we performed General Linear Models and SIDAK post hoc test, with significance p≤0.05. The protocol was approved by UNIFEP Ethics Committed (#2.00.369).


The mean scores of PWB were smaller in 36SD at BAS and AF30 (18.6±0.9 to 14.2±0.87 p=0.03 and 19.2±0.82 to 14.6±1.21 p=0.04, respectively) and the FAT were higher in 36SD at BAS, AF30 and ATRT (6.2±0.89 to 15.6±1.79 p<0.01; 8.5±1.56 to 13.0±1.88 p=0.04; 9.8±1.12 to 14.3±2.03 p= 0.02, respectively). No statistical difference was found in PYS at any time between the two experimental conditions.


36 hours of sleep deprivation decreases the feeling of well-being and increases fatigue in healthy men, and intense physical exercise seems to be able to mitigate these losses in affective responses. Furthermore, impaired affective responses to physical exercise may be one of the mechanisms involved in performance impairments after sleep deprivation.


sleep deprivation, mental health, physical exercise.


Área Clínica


Universidade Federal de Sâo Paulo - UNIFESP - São Paulo - Brasil


Carina Faggiani Dias, Marcos Mônico-Neto, Sérgio Tufik, Hanna Karen Moreira Antunes