Dr. Felicia Cavallini's Research Hopes To Get People Moving In Winter

Published on Published on:
Monday, September 16, 2019 - 2:30pm
MyWinter Graphic

Looking for a way to shake off the upcoming winter blues?

Limestone College Professor of Physical Education Dr. Felicia Cavallini recently had research published that might just help you ward off Old Man Winter.

Cavallini’s research, entitled “Achieving the Physical Activity Guidelines during the Wintertime While Engaging in MyWinter and MyWinterHoliday Activity,” has been published in the Journal of Physical Activity Research.

The study targeted the Canadian and American adult populations to examine the physical barriers to physical education and ultimately improve physical activity participation during the winter time. The research found that winter was the only significant barrier for physical education among the participants, particularly among females. The research provided “MyWinter” and “MyWinterHoliday” graphics on how to increase the amount of physical activity during winter.

Cavallini said she hopes to use this publication to educate the public in having the confidence to be physically active during the winter months. The “MyWinter” and “MyWinterHoliday” graphics represent not only the face of the research, but the inspiration, motivation, and education behind inspiring people to move in a way that is way more meaningful, doable, and invigorating for them.

“Many of the participants in Phase I of this study did mention that they disliked cold weather, and that it set the mood to not want to do anything outside,” Cavallini explained in the publication. “There is a clear decrease in physical activity during the winter. Accordingly, interventions should be implemented to encourage people to participate in physical activity during the winter by increasing awareness and giving more access to indoor facilities.

“Perhaps psychologically embracing winter weather and continuing to keep an active lifestyle in and around the home can help maintain the recommended physical activity guidelines of 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week,” she continued. “Instead of fighting the weather, people need to embrace the change and let nature inspire the shift of physical activity patterns in a more meaningful way while household responsibilities, work assignments, and personal goals and objectives are fulfilled. Going outdoors may not be as appealing but viable alternatives can be achieved at home. For those attracted to outdoor physical activity during the winter, bob sledding, snow shoeing, ice skating, or cross-country skiing are all popular, vigorous activities. Proper attention to clothing, including effective layering of warm outerwear may make it more pleasant to go outside and engage in active transportation or recreational walking.”

The Journal of Physical Activity publishes original research and review papers examining the relationship between physical activity and health, studying physical activity as an exposure as well as an outcome.

Cavallini earned her Education Doctorate Degree in Physical Education from the University of Houston and has accomplished numerous presentations and peer-reviewed publications both nationally and internationally while at Limestone. Between 2014 and 2015, she completed an 11-month Fulbright Scholar Student/Research Grant in Canada where she served at the University of Guelph as a Visiting Research Chair in the Human Health and Nutritional Sciences Department, and her primary focus was on physical activity and exercise. Cavallini taught and conducted research in collaboration with the faculty and currently serves as an ambassador to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and Canada.