Reducing Stress Through Exercise



What is “stress”?

  •  “A state of mental tension and worry caused by problems in your life, work, etc.”
  • “Something that causes strong feelings of worry or anxiety”
  • “A specific response by the body to a stimulus, as fear or pain, that disturbs or interferes with the normal physiological equilibrium”



 A healthy life must have a balance of stress


Two Types of Stress


“Stress that is deemed healthful or giving one the feeling of fulfillment”

Positive stress enhances growth and development



“ A state of extreme necessity or misfortune; great pain, anxiety, or sorrow; acute physical or mental suffering; affliction; trouble" Negative stress decreases attentional focus and creates muscle tension


Time Based Classifications of Stress

Acute: immediate/instantaneous stress

Chronic: long term stress




Facts About Stress:

  • Seven out of ten adults say they experience stress daily.
  • Exercise, regardless of the type, is positively correlated to reducing stress.
  • Even five minutes of exercise (although 30 minutes is recommended) can start to show a reduction in stress levels.
  • Exercising is found to help reduce stress by giving people feelings of being in control, giving them a fun way to express themselves, amping up their self-esteem, and making them feel self-efficient.


Common Negative Symptoms of Stress


  • Aches and pains, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, dizziness, increase blood pressure, loss of sex drive, and frequent colds.


  • Moodiness, irritability, short tempered, inability to relax, feeling overwhelmed, a sense of loneliness/isolation, depression, and unhappiness.


  • Change in appetite, unstable sleeping patters, neglecting responsibilities, and the use of alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax.


  • Memory problems, easily distracted, negative thoughts, anxiousness, and constant worrying.

Exercises to Alleviate Stress

  • Go for a run!
  • Do some yoga.
  • Lift weights.
  • Jump rope or hula hoop!
  • Play Nintendo Wii or XBOX Kinect!


Tips to Stay Motivated

  • Start small
  • Find exercises that YOU enjoy!
  • Set a schedule and stick to it!
  • Use a buddy system so that you have someone to hold you accountable.
  • Set reasonable short term and long-term goals.


“You’re only one workout away from a good mood!”