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Tai Chi More Effective Than Some Other Exercises for Depression in College Students

November 25, 2020 - Depression among college students is common, exercise interventions are valued as one of the most widely prescribed interventions for depressed college students, however, it is especially difficult for university administrators to determine which exercise intervention is most effective, and efficacy of exercise interventions among depressed college students have not been evaluated.

In November 2020, the American journal Medicine published a Chinese systematic review that compares the efficacy of 7 exercise interventions for decreasing symptoms of depression in college students. A network of meta-analysis (NMA) was conducted to fill the objectives. Five electronic databases were searched for the related articles: randomized controlled trials comparing the efficacy of 7 Exercise interventions with usual care of college students with depression were included in the review.

Fourteen trials were identified, including 2,010 depressed college students. The result of direct meta-analysis of this review indicated exercise interventions overall had a significantly lower mean depression scores when compared with usual care. The result of NMA indicated when comparing with badminton intervention, yoga and Tai chi can significantly decrease depression scores of the depressed college students.

Tai chi exhibited the highest probability that became the most efficacy intervention among the comparisons, and Yoga showed the second most effectiveness to alleviate depressive symptoms of depressed college students, and dance ranks the third, followed by run, volleyball, basketball, and badminton respectively.


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