A Dual Method Inquiry into the Benefits of Exercise for People in Recovery from Substance Abuse: Literature Review and Qualitative Study
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This paper makes a case for physical exercise as an intervention for individuals in recovery from substance abuse. Mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety often co-occur with substance abuse (Quello, Brady & Sonne, 2005), and this article investigates the hypothesis that exercise ought to benefit the substance abuse population based on existing evidence of benefit for mental health and wellbeing. Quantitative research methods alone may be inadequate to explore complex phenomena such as addiction process and recovery (Faulkner & Taylor, 2005). A comprehensive review of research that looks at the relationship between exercise and mental health is augmented by a qualitative study that describes the experiences of two individuals in recovery from alcoholism who have incorporated physical exercise into their lives.