Exercise in Women with Adverse Childhood Experiences

Effects of Exercise on Young Adult Women With ACEs: an Integrative Pilot Study

The process by which the body responds to stressors to maintain homeostasis is called allostasis and is dependent on the integrated function of the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems. ACEs adversely affect these system, cause allostatic load, and can modify development of allostatic systems. However, the central hypothesis is that exercise can reduce allostatic load by positively augmenting function of each of these three systems. No previous studies have examined the effects of structured exercise interventions in individuals with ACEs. The investigators are studying the effects of 8-weeks of structured resistance and aerobic exercise on biomarkers related to nervous, endocrine, immune, and metabolic function and several clinical outcomes in young adult women with ACEs. The specific aims will test several hypotheses, and are as follows: SPECIFIC AIM 1: Conduct a feasibility study to explore whether progressive, structured exercise can help mitigate the adverse physiological effects of stress and trauma early in life. SPECIFIC AIM 2: Determine whether progressive, structured exercise can help improve health-related quality of life, anxiety, and traits like hope, self-efficacy, or self-control, resilience. SPECIFIC AIM 3: Determine whether the type and timing of exposure to ACEs has a significant influence on the severity of psychopathology and long-term physiological response to ACEs.

No pharmaceutical medication involved
Patients and healthy individuals accepted

Behavioral - Exercise

Participants assigned to the exercise group will undergo structured, progressive resistance and aerobic exercise for 8 weeks. Resistance training and aerobic training will each be completed twice weekly for a total of 16 resistance and 16 aerobic exercise training sessions.

Effects of Exercise on Young Adult Women With ACEs: an Integrative Pilot Study