Physical activity and stress

The physical benefits of exercise are well known – it can reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke; lower your blood pressure and balance your cholesterol; and can shape and tone your muscles too.

Yet exercise not only improves your physical health, it also helps lowers your risk of mental health conditions.

Exercise and stressPhysical activity reduces stress hormones and stimulates the release of endorphins (the hormones that make you feel good).

Research studies have found that keeping active can boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy, as well as reduce the risk of stress, depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

According to one study, those who got regular vigorous exercise were 25 per cent less likely to develop depression or an anxiety disorder over the next five years.

Aerobic exercise, such as Fight Fit Combat Fitness, also pumps more blood and oxygen to the brain which improves cognitive function.

Exercise promotes production of neurohormones, such as norepinephrine, that are associated with improved cognitive function, elevated mood and learning.

About five minutes of aerobic exercise can also begin to stimulate anti-anxiety effects.