The Effect of Excersie on Mental Health

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The Effect of Excersie on Mental Health I. Introduction A. Although most people know about the many physical benefits that result from consistent exercise: 1. More than 60% of adults do not achieve the recommended amount of physical activity. 2. In addition, 25% of all adults are not active at all B. This is disturbing, not only because so many people are missing out on the physical benefits that result from exercise, but on the mental benefits that result from exercise as well II. Body Main Point #1: A great deal of attention has been paid to the relationship between physical fitness and psychological health. The four psychological areas that have been studied the most are: 1) Psychological well-being and mood, 2) personality and self-concept, 3) Psychological stress response, and 4) cognition (i.e.- perception, knowledge, and awareness; thinking) A. Well-Being and Mood (Short & Long term Benefits of Exercise) 1. Short Term Benefits a. The most common result of these studies is that physical activity improves mood and well-being immediately following the exercise. b. [Berger and Owens, 1988] One study examined 170 people. One group attended swimming, fencing, or physical conditioning classes. The second group attended lecture classes where no exercise was involved. i. Questionnaires that were filled out directly before and after the class sessions showed significant mood improvement in the classes where exercise was involved (compared to the non-physical activity classes). 2. Long Term Benefits a. Most of these studies indicate that having a consistent exercise program improves well-being and mood. b. [Moses, et al, 1989] This study examined a random sample of... ... middle of paper ... ...y also improve work-related habits. B. Other 1. Though there are many theories on exactly how exercise improves psychological well-being, no one theory has any substantial experiential evidence to back it up. 2. There has been virtually no research regarding the frequency and duration of exercise sessions on mental health. Thus, it is impossible to determine the optimal frequency and duration of exercise for psychological improvements. 3. Finally, the types of exercise that enhance psychological functioning the most have not been determined. This is because most research relating exercise to mental health has been done with aerobic activities (i.e.- running, walking, biking, and swimming). 4. [Doyne, et al, 1987] More recent research suggests that anaerobic exercise, such as weight lifting, may be at least just as effective an aerobic exercise.

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