Leisure Experience and Participation and Its Contribution to Stress-related Growth Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to alter daily life and its long-term impact remains unknown, research is needed to examine the effects of this unprecedented pandemic on public health and well-being. Leisure has the potential to facilitate personal growth and to serve as a vehicle for personal transformation under stressful circumstances. The purpose of the study is two-fold: (1) to explore leisure experiences and participation during the COVID-19 global pandemic; and (2) to examine how leisure experiences and participation contribute to stress-related growth during this public health crisis. A total of 470 U.S. residents completed an online survey in July 2020. The results indicated a decline in participation for all types of leisure activities. Changes in leisure activities varied by age and income but social activities had the most substantial decline, followed by outdoor and physical activities. Leisure needs, satisfaction, and social activities were statistically significant predictors of stress-related growth during the pandemic. These findings provide further understanding of how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted engagement in leisure activities, and additional evidence that participating in leisure can facilitate personal growth during periods of adversity.

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Leisure Studies

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