The Best Stress-Relieving Exercises

The Best Stress-Relieving Exercises

Exercise is a great way to reduce stress and anxiety while promoting health and energy levels. Discover our top exercise techniques for better wellbeing.

When life conspires against you – sleepless nights, a lack of concentration, everyday worries –stress strikes. One way to help reduce anxiety is with exercise. Try one – or more – of these popular stress-relief exercises

Get your yoga on
A series of moving or stationary poses combined with deep breathing (great for the relief of stress), yoga naturally strengthens your body's ability to relax. Don’t be scared by tales of sweaty bikram studios – slower, low-impact yoga is effective for stress relief. Stretch away your anxieties and get a hot body to boot. Look for a beginner’s class nearby or try an online tutorial.

Chill out with T’ai Chi
Its roots are in martial arts, but T’ai Chi is similar to yoga with flowing movements and breathing techniques that calm your mind while conditioning your body. “Getting involved in an exercise group also provides psychological support and is helpful in bolstering against everyday challenges and disappointments,” says David Baldwin, Professor of Psychiatry and Head of Mental Health at Southampton University. Plus, once you learn the moves, you can do them anywhere, any time.

Keep on running
A straightforward way to get blood pumping, but take running slowly at first if you're new to it. Better still, ask a friend to go with you and you can help motivate each other. The change of scenery and fresh air are fabulous distractions. Hayley Jarvis, Community Programmes Manager (Sport) at Mind, says, “When you’re physically active, your brain chemistry changes through the release of ‘feel good’ hormones called endorphins – hence, ‘runner’s high’.”

Hit bootcamp
Regular bootcamp or personal trainer sessions mix up the exercises and are a short, sharp, calorie-busting shock – time flies but the buzz lasts! According to Hayley, “Exercise helps us switch off from everyday pressures, relieves stress and gives us time to clear our heads. It also reduces levels of cortisol, the stress hormone.”

Fight back with boxercise
Easily bored? Check out a boxercise or martial arts class. Punching is a great way to release pent-up anger! Surprisingly, you shouldn’t ache too much after boxing – classes involve a lot of ducking and diving (as well as boxing, obviously), helping keep muscles supple and you stress-free.

De-stress anywhere anytime
Only 5 minutes to spare?Try this de-stressing facial massage for a simple pick-me-up. [VIDEO LINK]

Top tip…
Always speak to your doctor first if you’re new to exercise. And remember that using Lenor in the wash will give your exercise kit long-lasting freshness. De-stressed and feeling fresh. Double win!

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