Foothills at Red Oak Recovery promotes physical activity as part of a holistic approach to healing and therapy. Our exercise therapy program for adolescent boys ages 14–17 offers many benefits that can help our clients feel better and accomplish the goals they’ve set for themselves.
The benefits of working out are crucial to a teen’s overall well-being, as a dedicated exercise therapy program improves mental health in several ways. If you know an adolescent who may benefit from participating in this type of program for mental health, contact Foothills at Red Oak Recovery at 866.300.5275.
How Are Exercise and Mental Health Related?
The benefits of working out extend to more than just the health of the body. Many people don’t realize the extent to which exercise also improves mental health, both in the short term and the long term.
Some of the mental health benefits of exercise include:
- Improving mood
- Promoting restful sleep
- Enhancing focus, memory, and concentration
- Alleviating stress, anxiety, and depression
- Improving physical fitness
- Increasing confidence and self-esteem
Many people, including adolescent boys, enjoy getting regular exercise because it gives them a deep sense of personal accomplishment. They often report having more energy during the day and feeling more positive about their lives in general.
Exercise and mental health are related in many ways. One of the most crucial connections is the rush of endorphins that accompanies physical activity.
During a workout and for a short time afterward, the body releases endorphins, which are the chemicals responsible for creating feelings of happiness and well-being. For this reason, they’re often referred to as the body’s “feel good” chemicals.
In addition, exercise has been shown to reduce systemic inflammation and stimulate neural growth by forming new motor pathways in the brain.
The Benefits of Working Out: Fighting Depression
When our clients take part in physical activity, they often find that it serves as a valuable distraction from the effects of their depression. In other words, working out allows them to break the cycle of negative thoughts that contribute to depressive behavior.
Exercise doesn’t have to be intense to be beneficial. Studies by Harvard University have found that walking for one hour reduces the risk of depression by as much as 26% while also relieving symptoms of depression already present.
Exercise and Mental Health: Stress and Anxiety
Experts recommend that participants pay attention to their bodies instead of zoning out during workouts to take full advantage of the benefits offered by exercise.
When clients are tuned into the sensation of their feet making contact with the ground, the rhythm of their breath, or the feeling of the breeze on their skin, it introduces an element of mindfulness that can be immensely therapeutic.
Mindfulness is when a person focuses on their body and how they’re using it. By adding time for mindful exercise throughout the day, clients can not only improve their physical condition but also disrupt the flow of worry caused by various stressors.
In this way, exercise can even offer relief from conditions where mood or perception tends to influence the severity of physical symptoms, such as insomnia, muscle cramps, elevated heart rate, and even back pain and headaches.
Reap the Benefits of Working Out with Foothills at Red Oak Recovery
Our clients gain every advantage they deserve when they take part in our structured exercise therapy programs. We also offer a range of supplemental therapies and treatment modalities, including equine therapy and family therapy.