How do exercise programs help? - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

How do exercise programs help?

The physical and emotional benefits of exercising regularly differ by age, gender and body make up. Here is a list of physical benefits for different groups.

o Older adults
No one is too old to enjoy the benefits of regular physical activity. Evidence indicates that muscle-strengthening exercises can reduce the risk of falling and fracturing bones and can improve the ability to live independently.

o Parents and children
Parents can help their children maintain a physically active lifestyle by providing encouragement and opportunities for physical activity. Families can plan outings and events that allow and encourage everyone in the family to be active.

o Teenagers
Regular physical activity improves strength, builds lean muscle, and decreases body fat. Activity can build stronger bones to last a lifetime.

o People trying to manage their weight
Regular physical activity burns calories while preserving lean muscle mass. Regular physical activity is a key component of any weight-loss or weight-management effort.

o People with high blood pressure
Regular physical activity helps lower blood pressure.

o People with physical disabilities, including arthritis
Regular physical activity can help people with chronic, disabling conditions improve their stamina and muscle strength. It also can improve psychological well-being and quality of life by increasing the ability to perform the activities of daily life.
Other physical benefits include reducing the risk of developing many serious medical conditions including:
o coronary heart disease (CHD)
o high blood pressure
o type 2 diabetes mellitus
o colon cancer
o a stroke or heart attack.

Additional benefits include
o Lowers both total blood cholesterol and triglycerides and increases high-density lipoproteins (HDL or the "good" cholesterol).
o Helps build and maintain healthy bones, muscles and joints.
o Helps people achieve and maintain healthy body weight.

Emotional/Mental benefits are often overseen. Regular physical activity improves one's mood, helps relieve depression, and increases feelings of wellbeing. It also reduces feelings of depression, tension and anxiety and promotes psychological wellbeing and reduces feelings of stress.

In an inactive lifestyle bad health can often be a problem. When health conditions become a problem from the lack of physical activity, the emotional health takes a toll as well. Stress, depression and anxiety are only a few of the common side effects that are exacerbated with ill health and lack of exercise.
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