Performance during stress: Affective personality, age, and regularity of physical exercise

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Torsten Norlander
Sven-Ake Bood
Trevor Archer
Cite this article:  Norlander, T., Bood, S.-A., & Archer, T. (2002). Performance during stress: Affective personality, age, and regularity of physical exercise. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 30(5), 495-508.

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In order to study the role of stress upon performance as a function of age and personality type, participants were derived from three different occupational categories. Performance ability during stress and health condition of participants were studied through application of the Stroop Color and Word Test, the Stress and Energy Instrument, the Glare Pressure Test and systolic blood pressure measurements - whereas the four different personality types were derived through application of the Positive Affect (PA) and Negative Affect (NA) scales. It was found that self-actualization individuals (i.e. those demonstrating high positive affect and low negative affect) showed the best performance under the influence of stress whereas the high affective (i.e. high positive affect and high negative affect) showed the lowest levels of systolic blood pressure during resting. No differences in performance during stress were found between the younger and older participants encompassed by high positive affect, whereas an age difference was shown for high negative affect individuals. Regularity of exercise was associated with high positive affect and contributed to the ability of older participants to attain levels of performance comparable with those of younger participants.
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This study was supported by grants from the Swedish National Center for Research in Sports

Appreciation is due to anonymous reviewers.

Dr. T. Norlander, Department of Psychology, Karlstad University, SE-651 88 Karlstad, Sweden. Phone: 46-54-7001178; Fax: 46-54-839165; Email: [email protected]#mce_temp_url#

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