Reducing Stress With Exercise and Movement
Exercise provides an outlet for negative emotions, irritability, depression, hostility, anger, frustration, and anxiety. Regular exercise provides the opportunity to manage the “fight or flight response“ and helps the body to return to a balanced state more quickly.
Exercise can also improve self-esteem and self-worth. We may feel more outgoing and social because of the increased energy. Our self-esteem is be enhanced by taking on exercise challenges or goals, giving us a feeling of accomplishment and reward.
Exercise increases your overall health and your sense of well-being, which puts more pep in your step every day. But exercise also has some direct stress-busting benefits.
Increase Your Endorphins
Physical activity helps to bump up the production of your brain’s “feel-good“ neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Although this function is often referred to as a runner’s high, a game of tennis or a even a hike can generate this same feeling.
Exercise = Meditation
As you begin to regularly shed your daily tensions through movement and physical activity, you may find that this focus on a single task, and the resulting energy and optimism, can help you remain calm and clear in everything that you do.
Regular exercise can increase self-confidence and lower the symptoms associated with mild depression and anxiety. Exercise also can improve your sleep, which is often disrupted by stress, depression and anxiety. All this can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of command over your body and your life.
Stress Relief Exercises
Exercise for relieving stress may be in the form of physical, mental, or spiritual exercise. Often, what is good for your body is good for your mind and vice versa. From doing gentle stretching exercises to keeping up in a physically demanding aerobics class, stress relief can be achieved through a wide range of activities.
Any activity that gets your heart pumping will get the stress-relieving endorphins flowing. Though you should check with your doctor before embarking on any exercise program, walking is usually safe for anyone. Try to get your heart going a little faster for at least 15 minutes a day. Even a few minutes here and there of brisk walking can provide stress relief and improve your overall health.
Though not generally as effective as aerobics for relieving stress, many people find that getting into a strengthening exercise program does relieve stress. Strength exercises are also important to prevent injury during aerobic exercise by strengthening the muscles that support your joints.
Stretching exercises stimulate receptors in the nervous system that decrease the production of stress hormones. Stretching exercises also relax tight, tense muscles and increase blood flow to the muscles.
Yoga exercises involve the body, mind and spirit. Yoga improves flexibility and strength and incorporates breathing techniques that aid in relaxation and general wellness. Stress relief exercises that don’t involve movement but involve both mind and body include meditation exercises and deep breathing exercises; both have been shown to reduce blood pressure.
Self-Care Activities Alleviate Stress
On the days you don’t exercise, do something else you find relaxing It is not selfish to spend time on yourself! How can you have the energy to take care of others unless you take care of yourself?
At The Spencer Institute, we provide the quality education and support you need, so you can earn your training, coaching, or specialist certification with confidence.
Our stress management coaching program is designed for life coaches, as well as fitness and wellness professionals who want to expand his or her knowledge in the lucrative and expanding field.
NESTA and Spencer Institute coaching programs are open to anyone with a desire to learn and help others. There are no prerequisites.
That’s it for now.