Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Physical activity linked to political participation

Date:
February 1, 2011
Source:
Association for Psychological Science
Summary:
How is going for a jog like voting for president? As far as our brains are concerned, physical activity and political activity are two sides of the same coin. Scientists found that people who live in more active states are also more likely to vote. And in an experiment, volunteers who were exposed to active words like "go" and "move" said they were more likely to vote than did people who saw words like "relax" and "stop."

How is going for a jog like voting for president? As far as our brains are concerned, physical activity and political activity are two sides of the same coin. Scientists found that people who live in more active states are also more likely to vote. And in an experiment, volunteers who were exposed to active words like "go" and "move" said they were more likely to vote than did people who saw words like "relax" and "stop."

Related Articles


The study was inspired by research showing that brains lump all kinds of activity together. For instance, a message that's meant to promote fitness -- physical activity -- can also trigger people to eat more -- another kind of activity, and with the exact opposite result. Kenji Noguchi of the University of Southern Mississippi, Ian M. Handley of Montana State University, and Dolores Albarracín of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign were inspired by the 2008 presidential election to see if the same was true for political activity.

For a new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, the researchers pulled together data on how often people exercise, diabetes rates, obesity, and use of amphetamines and other stimulants, to create an "action-tendency index" for the 50 states. They ranked states, from the movers and shakers of Colorado, Alaska, and Oregon to slower-paced Mississippi, West Virginia, and Tennessee. The states' ranking for physical activity roughly corresponded with voter turnout in the 2004 election.

The researchers also tested this link with experiments. In one experiment before the 2008 election, students completed words with some letters missing -- so they were exposed to words like "go" and "active" or "relax" and "paralyze." Students who had encountered active words were more likely to say they would vote in the presidential election than students who worked with words like "freeze."

This link to physical activity could be used to encourage people to vote, says Albarracín. "It could be anything from promoting voting in a sports context to connecting voting to a self-help context that encourages being proactive -- that's a big audience that's thinking about how to improve their own lives and may not otherwise think of doing so politically. This might be easier than getting politically naďve or uninvolved people to vote because they care about politics per se."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Association for Psychological Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K. Noguchi, I. M. Handley, D. Albarracin. Participating in Politics Resembles Physical Activity: General Action Patterns in International Archives, United States Archives, and Experiments. Psychological Science, 2010; DOI: 10.1177/0956797610393746

Cite This Page:

Association for Psychological Science. "Physical activity linked to political participation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 February 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110201122542.htm>.
Association for Psychological Science. (2011, February 1). Physical activity linked to political participation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110201122542.htm
Association for Psychological Science. "Physical activity linked to political participation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110201122542.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) — NIAID Director Anthony Fauci said the risk of Ebola becoming an epidemic in the U.S. is essentially zero Thursday at the Washington Ideas Forum. He also said an Ebola vaccine will be tested in West Africa in the next few months. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer History on Display at Museum of Death

Killer History on Display at Museum of Death

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) — Visitors take a trip down murderer memory lane at the Museum of Death located in the heart of Hollywood. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) — A nurse who vowed to defy Maine's voluntary quarantine for health care workers who treated Ebola patients followed through on her promise Thursday, leaving her home for an hour-long bike ride. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ban On Wearable Cameras In Movie Theaters Surprises No One

Ban On Wearable Cameras In Movie Theaters Surprises No One

Newsy (Oct. 30, 2014) — The Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theatre Owners now prohibit wearable cameras such as Google Glass. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins