The physical benefits of exercise are well known. What isn’t promoted so well are the mental benefits. According to the Mental Health Foundation an average of one in four people will experience some kind of mental health problem over the course of a year. With our present economic climate this may well increase.
Regular exercise can help mental focus and concentration. This may offer a distraction from negative thoughts of depression, anxiety and stress.
Completing an exercise class can make you feel on top of the world. It has been noted that exercise releases chemicals that make one feel good.
This in turn can raise self confidence and may help one ‘face life’s problems’ rather than withdrawing into one’s own problems.
Joining an activity group is a great way to meet people, increasing social interaction. This enhances a feeling of belonging and being part of something larger – a sense of community. Committing to a regular exercise session can add structure to the day which is an essential life skill.
Outdoor exercise offers something richer – an opportunity to connect to the environment which can provide a sense of peace and tranquillity.
Exercise can reduce tension, anger, frustration and mental fatigue. It gives us a natural energy boost, provides a better social life and it can be fun.