12 Aug 2019

Mental health issues, like chronic stress, depression, and anxiety are prevalent in society. Hence, almost one in two Australians experiences a mental health condition in their lifetime.

According to the Australian Psychological Society Stress and Wellbeing in Australia Survey 2015, 35% of Australians reported a significant level of distress in their lives; so 26% report above normal levels of anxiety and 26% report moderate to extremely severe depression symptoms.

“If you are working with people you’re working with people experiencing these conditions,” says Dr. Simon Rosenbaum.

Evidence for the role of exercise in depression is compelling. Similarly, It can reduce the likelihood of developing the condition and alleviating symptoms.

“There are some high levels of evidence suggesting that for some people with depression. Exercise can be of equivalent benefit to anti-depressant medications. Therefore, exercise is a very good add-on therapy,” says Dr. Rob Stanton.

GETTING THE ‘DOSE’ RIGHT!  Exercise is beneficial for mental health. What is needed to reap the benefits and how frequently? These are questions that a scientist is still investigating.
  1. ENJOYMENT MATTERS: “Research shows the ‘effective valence’ or pleasure response to a single bout of aerobic exercise can predict participation in the long-term, six and 12 months down the track,” says Dr. Rob Stanton. “The less pleasurable the activity is perceived to be, the less likely people are to engage in an exercise in the future.” This is particularly important for clients with mental illness, whose motivation and self-efficacy may below. Training with a buddy or personal trainer can increase enjoyment.
  2. IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE INTENSIVE: In a 2013 review of exercise program variables. Aerobic exercise, undertaken three times weekly at moderate intensity for a minimum of nine weeks was beneficial for depression. So, you don’t need to be a superstar to participate and get the benefits.
  3. CONSISTENCY IS KEY: “We can’t expect exercise to be a cure; hence, it can help people manage their condition and get back to a functional recovery where they can live their life. So, Long-term behavioral change is what we need to focus on,” says Dr. Simon Rosenbaum. The convenience of being able to access a 24/7 health club. It can mean the difference between getting the workout in or giving up.
  4. INCLUDE WEIGHT TRAINING: “There are studies to show that weight training, probably is good as aerobic measures for changes in mood, anxiety and intellectual capacity, and we should be doing it a few times a week anyway,” says John Ratey, Associate Clinical Professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
Thanks for sharing Duncan and if you are looking to kick start your inspirational health and fitness story… Simply call 1300 040 479 or drop in to see the friendly Coffs Coast Health Club team at either Toormina or Moonee Beach to get started today.
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