Exercise tips

Many people find that physical activity helps them maintain positive mental health, either on its own, or in combination with other treatments. Don’t force it though. Start with watching these tips and decide for yourself.

If you find something that has really worked for you, do not hesitate to share that with us. It might help someone else if you do. Please send us a detailed description, a video or audio file. Both files and links are accepted. Thank you.

Yoga

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Yoga has been known to help ease stress, reduce feelings of anxiety, and enhance mindfulness. For these reasons, yoga has been considered to be potentially beneficial for people with mental disorders.

Yoga is believed to have originated in India over 5,000 years ago. Derived from ancient Indian language the term yoga means “unite.” Yoga practice involves a joining of the body, mind, and spirit. Through breathwork, meditation, movements, and relaxation, yoga can help restore a sense of personal balance.

Yoga has become a popular way to renew the body by increasing strength, improving balance, and enhancing flexibility. Many people are devoted to the yoga lifestyle that includes a practice beyond physical exercise. Numerous non-exercise aspects of yoga, such as breathing exercises and meditation, can help calm a busy mind and assist in letting go of stress. Given the many stress-reduction benefits of yoga, it is not surprising that yoga can also be helpful in managing fears, panic attacks, and anxiety.

Stretching

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People who are stressed often have contracted muscles. In turn, these muscle contractions give you a feeling of tenseness and overall uneasiness. When you feel this way, try stretching since it loosens muscles that are tight and increases blood flow.

Stretching/exercise has been shown in studies to aid the release of endorphins, a group of hormones that interact with the receptors in your brain reducing the feeling of pain and triggering a positive feeling in your body which in turn helps you attain a feeling of joy.

Stretching when you wake up is a great way to start your day as it gets your blood flowing which increases your brain activity; stretching before bedtime will help optimise your sleep as you release all the tension in your body that you’ve picked up throughout the day.

Zumba

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Zumba is one of the most popular exercise crazes in recent years, and with good reason! Zumba happens to be a very versatile form of exercise it can be done anywhere for example at the swimming pool, gym or in the comfort of your own home. With Zumba, you can listen to any of your favourite high energy songs and just follow the instructed moves or even make up your own. With Zumba, you’re really in control and you can set your own limit of intensity. Zumba is also a great way to exercise in larger groups and socialise. Also, there are many health benefits of Zumba, such as increased endurance, improving confidence, boosting the metabolism and it has an incredible ability to work out every muscle in your body.

If you’re looking to boost your mood, going to the gym might not be the best idea. It can be an intimidating and frustrating experience, which often translates into a competitive atmosphere. However, Zumba is optimal for any levels of previous activity or experience.

Like all forms of exercise, Zumba causes the release of endorphins that can improve mood and reduce stress hormones in the body.

If you enjoy the video and you think that Zumba is most suitable for you, search for a class locally or start your own class at home.

Qi Gong

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Qi Gong have been shown to promote relaxation and decrease sympathetic output. Relaxation interventions are known to reduce clinical somatic symptoms and to benefit anxiety, depression, blood pressure, and recovery from immune-mediated diseases. Qi Gong has been shown to improve immune function and vaccine-response, to increase blood levels of endorphins and baroreflex sensitivity, as well as to reduce levels of inflammatory markers (C-reactive protein [CRP]), adrenocorticotropic hormone, and cortisol. Electroencephalography (EEG) studies of participants undergoing Qi Gong exercise have found increased frontal EEG α, β, and θ wave activity, suggesting increased relaxation and attentiveness. The most important aspect is finding a style that you enjoy and that you are likely to practice everyday, even if it is only for 15 minutes!

source: NCBI

Easy Stretches To Do At Work

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It may seem counterintuitive, but taking time for a break can improve your work flow and productivity. When you step away from your desk and release the stresses of your responsibilities, you come back to your work with a clear mind, ready to tackle the rest of your day.

Make it routine. Make a point to stretch at the same time-or hopefully times!-every day. Set an alarm to stretch every hour, take a few moments once you’re back from lunch, or stretch in the hallway after a bathroom break. Your new habit will be more likely to stick if it feels ingrained in your schedule.

Think outside the box. If you’re tied to your desk, there are plenty of subtle ways to stretch while you’re seated and working. Check out this video of quick desk stretches for easy moves to relieve tension in your neck, back, and wrists.

Don’t feel awkward. If you feel strange in the beginning, that’s okay. Once you start recognizing all the benefits of taking this time, it won’t feel as silly. After you start, others might even catch on and try it out for themselves. A few weeks down the line, who knows? You might even be leading stretching breaks for your whole office!

source: SHAPE Magazine

Tabata

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Tabata training is one of the most popular forms of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). It consists of eight rounds of ultra-high-intensity exercises in a specific 20-seconds-on, 10-seconds-off interval. It may only take four minutes to complete a Tabata circuit, but those four minutes may well push your body to its absolute limit.

High-intensity training also yields important mental health benefits. It helps to reduce symptoms of stress, anxiety, depression, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

There is also evidence that high-intensity training helps prevent the recurrence of anxiety and depression symptoms.

source: bodybuilding.com

+ Extra

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Not ready to get out of the chair? We understand. Have a little laugh then.

There you go.

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