|| Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid
Exercise has been shown to reduce anxiety in both humans and animals. To date, there are few, if any studies that examine the effect of stress on self-selected exercise using an animal model. This study examined the effect of acute stress on wheel-running distance in mice. Forty 8-week-old, male C57BL/6J mice were randomly assigned to one of three groups: no stress + wheel-running experience, stress + wheel-running experience, or stress with no wheel-running experience. Stressed mice were exposed to foot shock in a brightly lit environment. Following treatment, wheel-running distances were observed for three hours. Stress significantly increased voluntary wheel-running in mice with wheel-running experience as compared to nonstressed controls and stressed mice with no wheel-running experience. These results suggest that mice familiar with wheel-running may self-select this exercise as a modality for the mitigation of accumulated anxiety.