Page 1

Mind and Body: The Exercise Connection 2

Does what you do with your body affect your mind?

Those who have practiced yoga would definitely agree with this idea: the word “yoga” means “yoke” and refers to the mind-body connection,

with the idea that the postures taken during a yoga session will relax you and get you into a state of mind where you are ready to communicate with the gods – that’s why the yogis and Brahmins came up with the exercises in the first place.

But other things you do with your body can affect your mind and your mood in a much less calculated fashion. In general, exercise tends to make you feel good.

This means that a good exercise session can help you with a number of mental and emotional problems including depression and anxiety.

Why exercise makes you feel better could be due to a number of reasons.

Firstly, exercise gets your blood and heart going, and this helps you think more clearly as well as being physically good for you.

Your body isn’t stupid and it tends to enjoy things that are good for it if you listen to it carefully.

When you exercise, your body releases endorphins to help you perform the physical activity you’re doing – and endorphins make you feel great!

Secondly, exercising gives you a sense of achievement, which boosts your self-esteem and confidence.

OK, so you feel as though you might not be able to control your circumstances or overcome the problems that are making you anxious, but you can overcome the challenge of going for a run or a long walk, or doing a weights session.

Thirdly, exercise channels some of the hormones that are triggered by anxiety or stress into a beneficial channel.

When you worry about something or feel stressed about something, your body produces adrenaline.

Adrenaline makes your heart pump a bit harder and your breathing quicken as your body primes itself for action. If you don’t take action – usually because the thing that’s stressing you out or making you panic can’t be fought or run away from

– then these chemicals buzz around in your system and build up, often resulting in a panic attack or some of the physical symptoms of anxiety (and there’s another example of how the mind can affect the body).

But if you go for a long walk, dig your garden over, pound a pillow or put yourself through an intense cardio session, you get to release that energy and burn it off so it doesn’t cause you problems.

Exercise also gives you the chance to focus on something else other than the problems that are making you stressed, worried or depressed.

It’s hard to think about the argument you had with your partner when you’re counting the number of crunches you’ve done.

What’s more, the context in which we exercise is also beneficial in itself. If you go for a walk, run or bike ride, you often get the chance to see a lot of the beauty of the natural world

(yes, even in the middle of the city) as well as exposing yourself to fresh air (rather than air conditioning) and sunshine – sunshine’s a well-known mood booster!

Read more Mind and Body connection at Hypnosis Brisbane. (07) 5576 6410

Mind and Body - The Exercise Connection 2  
Mind and Body - The Exercise Connection 2  

We all know that mind and body are linked – this is one of the reasons why people come to find help for problems like weight loss and quitti...