Managing Stress, Anger and Depression With Exercise
Even a small amount of exercise each day can help manage stress and anger, reduce feelings of depression, improve mood, relieve lower back pain, and increase energy. Exercise is often prescribed as an enhancement to treatment for depression and seasonal affective disorder. Unfortunately, depression can take away the motivation, desire and energy to exercise, and depressive thoughts can convince a person that they will not benefit from exercise or are not able to exercise. If increased weight has accompanied the depression, feeling “too fat” or “too unfit” to exercise at a fitness club or to take a walk is a common reaction. Financial stressors can convince a person that they can’t afford a gym membership or exercise equipment, and can’t afford to exercise.
A ten minute workout at home with an exercise ball, with or without hand weights could be part of the solution. It is an important part of any recovery or wellness program to recognize what you CAN DO to help yourself, and JUST DO IT, even if you have to FAKE IT TO MAKE IT. In other words, if you don’t feel like exercising, pretend you do, or ACT AS IF. Then, eventually you will.
Exercise balls are known by a lot of different names to include stability balls, pilates balls, Swiss ball, Pezzi ball, balance ball, birth ball, yoga ball. Exercise balls are large plastic balls that were originally used in physical therapy and other medical treatments. They are now used in athletic training.
Exercise balls work “the core” - abdominal and back muscles. The body has to work harder using the ball than it would with floor exercises, because the ball requires use of more muscles to maintain stability in response to the instability of the ball. Over time these muscles used to maintain stability strengthen.
When choosing an exercise ball, choose the one that fits your height. Be sure that when you sit on it, your hips and knees are level, and your upper leg is parallel to the ground. If your hips are higher or lower than your knees, the ball does not fit properly.
Below are a number of links to other hubs and websites related to exercise ball workouts, and videos that show how the exercise ball can be used by all skill levels from beginner to advanced. There is a link to Amazon store where an exercise ball, hand weights, videos and related items are sold. Medicine balls can be found too, although I chose not to include them in this hub. See the links below for more hubs about medicine balls.
For moderate to severe depressive symptoms that persist for more than 2 weeks and include depressed mood, crying spells, guilt, sleep and appetite problems, and thoughts of suicide please call your doctor. Depression is one of the most common and most treatable conditions. There is no known benefit to prolonged suffering with depression!
- Benefits of Exercise to Help With Depression
While therapy and medications can be vital to depression treatment, one often-overlooked treatment is exercise. It not only improves health, but may help your emotional health. WebMD explores this topic and explains how exercise can benefit those wit
This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2010 Kim Harris