General anxiety and depression are associated with the physical activity and social interaction levels: Study in Argentinean university students during the COVID-19 outbreak


  • Alejo Barbuzza ITBA: Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires
  • Pedro Benedetti Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Celina Goyeneche Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Victoria Reppucci Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Franco Moscato Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Daniela Ramirez Butavand Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Cynthia Katche Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Jorge Horacio Medina Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Diego Moncada Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Haydee Viola Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)
  • Fabricio Ballarini Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires (ITBA)



COVID-19, Mental Health, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Depression, Physical activity, Social interaction



The COVID-19 pandemic impacted people’s mental health. We explored the levels of depression and Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and their relation with physical activity and social interaction during the pandemic.



We surveyed two different groups of university students to measure depression , generalized anxiety, physical activity and social interaction in two different moments of the pandemic. The survey was conducted in October/November 2020, after a peak of contagions. Some of the participants were surveyed again in January 2021 for longitudinal analysis.



Both mental health parameters were positively correlated for men and women.. Moreover, low levels of depression and anxiety were associated with performing physical activity for more than two days a week and to longer periods of social interaction. Finally, the second survey revealed a decrease in mental health symptoms.



Performing regular physical activity and avoiding long periods of social isolation gave benefits to mental health. 




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2023-07-06 — Updated on 2023-07-06