According to many researchers, physical exercise can considerably improve our mental health.
An investigation looking into the relationship between sport and psychology has proven that sports not only provide the opportunity to face fears, but also boost confidence and serotonin in individuals.
Not just this, it has also been discovered that individual sports such as cycling, aerobics and swimming provide major benefits in terms of psychological wellbeing.
It is significant in Movember to consider the increase in mental health issues on a national scale. In England, depression affects 3.3 in 100 people, whilst 7.8 out of 100 people have anxiety. Therefore, if Sport provides some stress relief and enjoyment, perhaps it should be considered as a serious coping mechanism.
Researchers from Yale University conducted a study, where they used 1.2 million adults across the different states of America as their case studies. The overall aim was comprehending how sport exactly influences people’s minds.
One of the questions that was posed was how frequently they practiced sport in the last 30 days and for what duration. It was concluded that those who take part in Sport on a more regular basis had a decrease in ‘bad days’: these including frequent anxiety attacks and suicidal thoughts.
However, researchers also questioned at what point sport becomes excessive and harmful. The ideal participation time ranges between 45-60 minutes a day, with 90 minutes being the limit.
In fact, taking part in physical activity for more than three hours a day can actually trigger a harmful mental state. Authors reported that an excessive amount of sport can lead to obsession, which therefore increases bad behaviour.
Nevertheless, individual sports are still useful for people that want to focus on getting healthy and becoming fitter, with only 45 minutes a day improving one’s mental health.