Preferred Name

Nicole Alyssa Fiscella

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Department of Kinesiology


Thomas Moran


Fiscella, N.A., Moran, T.E., Wigglesworth, J.K., and McKay, C.A. Relationship between Perceived and Actual Exertion and Enjoyment of Exercise in Individuals with Autism. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between perceived exertion, actual exertion and enjoyment of exercise in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Methods: A total of 16 participants (12 males and 4 females) between the ages of 5 and 38 who were diagnosed with ASD participated in the study. The intervention lasted 10 weeks and consisted of participation in one of James Madison University’s Overcoming Barriers hour long physical activity programs. Heart rate, perceived exertion, and enjoyment of exercise were measured following three exercises during the program. Results: There was no relationship between the three main variables however, a significant relationship, was found between exercise exertion and perceived exertion r = -0.151 (p = 0.66) and between enjoyment of exercise compared to perceived exertion r = 0.23 (p < 0.05). Conclusion: Consistent with the literature, participants are more likely to participate in exercises they enjoy, in addition we found hunger was related to both perceived exertion as well as with enjoyment of exercise. Further research still needs to be done between hunger and perceived exertion and enjoyment of exercise. Keywords: AUTISM, PERCEIVED EXERTION, ACTUAL EXERTION, ENJOYMENT, EXERCISE.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.