Cohesion is Associated With Perceived Exertion and Enjoyment During Group Exercise in Recreational Runners

Document Type


Publication Title

Journal of Exercise Physiology Online

Publication Date



Donna and Allan Lansing School of Nursing and Health Sciences


Department of Exercise Science


Cohesion is Associated with Perceived Exertion and Enjoyment during Group Running. JEPonline 2016; 19(6):24-39. The purpose of this study was to determine if interval running with a group affects average speed, perceived exertion (RPE), and/or enjoyment in recreational runners, and if these variables are associated with cohesion and/or social support. Twenty adult runners performed two trials under different social conditions (alone, group), consisting of high intensity intervals. Average interval time, enjoyment, and RPE were compared between trials. Social support and cohesion were assessed separately. There were no main or interaction effects on average speed (P>0.87), RPE (P>0.08), or enjoyment (P>0.26). Task cohesion (r = -.58, P=0.01) and social support (r = -.73, P=0.001) were negatively associated with RPE in the group condition only, and positively associated with enjoyment. Running with a group did not affect speed, enjoyment, or RPE during an interval workout. However, higher perceived task cohesion and social support were associated with lower perceived exertion and greater enjoyment during group running. While the group environment did not augment the subjects' average running speed during a high intensity interval workout, group training may nonetheless furnish psychological benefits that could aid in the completion of challenging, high intensity training sessions.