Benefits of regular exercise

Share this on...

What’s in it for me?

There are huge benefits to you, your family, and your whole community from getting more exercise.

Here are a few of the ways that increasing physical activity provides health, social, economic and environmental benefits.

And we’re not talking about going to the gym. Walking as part of your daily life provides benefits in as little as three 10-minute doses spread throughout the day.

*30 minutes for adults; more for children and teens; and the more you do, the more you benefit!

Physical Benefits

Science has shown that when children increase their daily physical activity, they decrease their chances of developing many diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes and are generally healthier and happier.

Being active for at least 60 minutes daily can help children:

  • Improve their health
  • Improve their fitness
  • Grow stronger
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Learn new skills

For children who are not active, adding any amount of physical activity can provide some health benefits. For these children, it is appropriate to start with smaller amounts of physical activity and gradually increase duration, frequency and intensity as a stepping stone to meeting the guidelines.

Benefits courtesy of ParticipACTION.

Science has shown that when teens increase their daily physical activity, they decrease their chances of developing many diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes and are generally healthier and happier.

Being active for at least 60 minutes daily can help teens:

  • Improve their health
  • Improve their fitness
  • Grow stronger
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Learn new skills

For youth who are not active, adding any amount of physical activity can provide some health benefits. For these youth, it is appropriate to start with smaller amounts of physical activity and gradually increase duration, frequency and intensity as a stepping stone to meeting the guidelines.

Benefits courtesy of ParticipACTION.

Being active for at least 150 minutes per week can help reduce the risk of:

  • Premature death
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Certain types of cancer
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Osteoporosis
  • Overweight and obesity

And can lead to improved:

  • Fitness
  • Strength
  • Mental health

For adults who are not active, adding any amount of physical activity can provide some health benefits. For these adults, it is appropriate to start with smaller amounts of physical activity and gradually increase duration, frequency and intensity as a stepping stone to meeting the guidelines.

Benefits courtesy of ParticipACTION.

Being active for at least 150 minutes per week can help reduce the risk of:

  • Chronic disease (such as high blood pressure and heart disease)
  • Premature death.

Following the Guidelines can also help older adults to:

  • Maintain functional independence
  • Maintain mobility
  • Improve fitness
  • Improve or maintain body weight
  • Maintain bone health

For older adults who are not active, adding any amount of physical activity can provide some health benefits. For these adults, it is appropriate to start with smaller amounts of physical activity and gradually increase duration, frequency and intensity as a stepping stone to meeting the guidelines.

Benefits courtesy of ParticipACTION.


Mental Health benefits

  • Mental health benefits of participation in physical activity include:
  • Improved self esteem and confidence;
  • Reduction in stress, anxiety and depression;
  • Improved mood and sense of wellbeing;
  • Improved concentration, enhanced memory and learning, and better performance at school;
  • Reduced feelings of fatigue and depression; and
  • Improved psychological wellbeing and mental awareness.

Social benefits

  • Increased community cohesion;
  • Improved social/community networks and social capital;
  • Improved family and community connectedness;
  • Safer communities; and
  • Reduction in sense of isolation and loneliness.

Social benefits specific to children

  • Development of communication, interpersonal, leadership and co-operation skills;
  • Creation of lasting friendships;
  • Increased interest in accepting responsibility;
  • Teaches them how to deal with winning and losing;
  • Provides a vehicle for responsible risk taking;
  • Helps build social skills among children and may deter anti social behaviour; and
  • Helps young people develop self-discipline and leadership.

Social benefits specific to seniors

  • Increased social contact; and
  • Prolonged, independent living.

Economic benefits

  • Health savings from reduced prevalence of chronic disease;
  • Productivity gains;
  • Creation of employment;
  • Attraction of tourism;
  • Low cost means of transport;
  • Support for local business;
  • Reduction in absenteeism; and
  • Reduction in crime.

Environmental benefits

Particularly where walking or cycling replaces car trips, benefits include:

  • Reduced traffic congestion;
  • Reduced air pollution;
  • Reduced greenhouse emissions;
  • Reduced noise pollution;
  • Safer places with people out and about; and
  • Reduced need for the enormous amount of space required to store, drive and park motor vehicles.

Other benefits of sport & physical activity

Personal benefits for children

  • Teaches them self discipline, commitment and responsibility;
  • Teaches them organisational skills and how to share; and
  • Teaches them to deal with pressures and stress;

Benefits to parents

  • Knowing where their children are, that they are being supervised and having fun;
  • Appreciation that their children are being active and healthy;
  • Better performance of their children in school. Research has shown that children who are involved in sport tend to stay in school longer and get better grades; and
  • Assistance in behaviours that will encourage lifelong health and wellbeing.

Benefits courtesy of Government of Western Australia Department of Sport and Recreation.

Think this is worth sharing...?Share on Facebook
Facebook
0Tweet about this on Twitter
Twitter