Physical activity and interoception (2018-2022) Zwischendurch den Puls erhöhen: Sport als Teil des Unterrichts am Oberstufenzentrum Orpund bei Biel. (NZZ, 16. Dezember 2021) Bild: Marco Zanoni Physical education had always had the task of enabling children and adolescents to experience a variety of movements in order to train their body awareness. Interoception, defined as the sense of the internal bodily state (e.g. heart rate), plays a critical role in the multifaceted concept of wellbeing; physical, cognitive, emotional and social. Regarding physical well-being, contemporary models of exercise regulation incorporate interoceptive processes in the regulation of exertion during physical activity. In addition, enhancing one’s physiological arousal by means of physical activity is a viable way of manipulating the afferent input entering the interoceptive system, appearing to optimise the integration of early sensory stimulation with later affective responses. Despite this, the relationship between physical activity and self-regulation is underrepresented in interoceptive research. The present project addresses this gap by integrating findings from different disciplines to support the overlapping mechanisms. Following from an initial theoretical review of the current literature, our experimental lab and field studies explore the mechanistic underpinnings of this relationship, aiming to develop a better understanding of how interoceptive processes influence, and are influenced by, physical activity. Further, we aim to reveal how such mechanisms are influenced by different baseline factors (e.g. stress). Developing our understanding of how interoceptive processes are shaped by physical activity could hold significant clinical implications considering the impact of aberrant interoception to mental health and well-being.