Assessing the impact of shift work and stress on the psychological and physiological wellbeing of police officers


Knowles, Simon R.; Bull, Diane F.

Available versions


The primary aim of this article is to assess the impact of a high stress shift work occupation (i.e., police work) on psychological (i.e., cognitive and somatic anxiety) and physiological (i.e., chronic fatigue, digestive and cardiovascular symptoms) wellbeing. Specifically, this study seeks to assess the impact ofage on psychological and physiological wellbeing as well as to assess the mediating impact of adverse (disengagement) and beneficial (engagement) coping strategies on psychological and physiological wellbeing. One hundred and twenty-nine subjects from two Police Local Area Commands in Eastern Australia completed a modified version of the Standard Shiftwork Index (SSI). It was hypothesized that age and disengagement coping would be adversely related to psychological and physiological symptoms and that, conversely, engagement coping would be beneficially related to psychological and physiological wellbeing. Although analysis of the data supported the hypothesis that age and disengagement coping were adversely related to a variety of psychological and physiological symptoms, the results did not support the hypothesis that engagement coping was beneficially related to either psychological or physiological wellbeing. These findings are discussed within the context their implications for police officer psychological and physiological wellbeing.

Publication year


Publication type

Journal article


Canadian Journal of Police and Security Services, Vol. 1, no. 4 (Winter 2003), pp. 337-342




Meritus Solutions


Copyright © 2003 Meritus Solutions, Inc. This work is reproduced in good faith. Every reasonable effort has been made to trace the copyright owner. For more information please contact <a href=''></a>.