Benefits of Physical Activity

Getting physically active is an important part of leading a healthy life.  Physical activity has lots of benefits for your body and mind.  Getting regular physical activity keeps your heart muscle healthy and strong and helps you build healthy muscles, bones and joints.  It’s also a good way to help manage and maintain a healthy body weight.  It can help you sleep better too.

Regular physical activity can help reduce your risk of getting serious diseases, such as cancer and type 2 diabetes.  It also improves blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.  Finally regular physical activity can release chemicals called endorphins in the brain.  They can help you feel happier, be more alert, deal better with stress and be able to concentrate more on activities like math and reading!  Experts recommend that you get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity every day.  How do you know if you are getting moderate to vigorous activity?  If you are breathing hard and sweating, you are getting a good workout that will help your heart!

After you are physically active, cool down.  This lets your body recover so your heart rate can gradually return to a resting level.  Walking at a slow pace or stretching are good ways to do this.  These are also good ways to relax if you feel overwhelmed at school, angry with a friend or just stressed out.  Did you know that people who are regularly physically active are less likely to be injured than people who are not regularly physically active?  The health benefits of physical activity far outweigh the risks of getting hurt for almost everyone.

Here are some of the benefits of regular physical activity for children and adolescents:
     ·       Better sleep
     ·       Building stronger muscles
     ·       Being in a better mood
     ·       Exercise grows brain cells
     ·       Feeling more confident / Better self image
     ·       Good healthy habits
     ·       Less chance of heart disease & high blood pressure
     ·       Less stress or tension
     ·       Maintaining a healthy weight
     ·       More energy during the day