Intro to Exercise


What to Know About Exercise

Written by Crystal Anthony, M.Ed.

  |  Reviewed by Hina J. Talib, MD

From stretching out your shoulders in downward dog pose, to sweating and breathing hard as you race down the soccer field, to having a push-up contest with your friend, there are all kinds of activities that qualify as exercise. 

Exercise can be divided into 4 Categories:
  1. Aerobic/cardio exercise: makes your heart rate and breathing speed up. 
  2. Strength training builds muscle by lifting weights or using resistance. 
  3. Stretching helps prevent injuries and increase mobility. 
  4. Skill training (speed, agility, balance, power) improves performance in sports.
Benefits of Exercise

Including exercise that you enjoy in your daily routine can lead to a number of mental, physical, and social benefits.

Mental Benefits:
  • Reduces anxiety and depression
  • Makes you feel happy by producing endorphins
  • Improves focus on your school work
  • Teaches you grit and determination, qualities that transfer to other areas of life
  • Boosts your self-esteem and confidence
Physical Benefits:
  • Improves your strength, endurance, and skill
  • Strengthens your bones
  • Maintains a healthy weight for your body
  • Helps you sleep better
  • Prevents sickness and diseases like diabetes
  • Benefits your skin
Social Benefits:
  • Meet new friends
  • Teaches you how to work together with others
  • Teaches you how to cope with failure and to celebrate others’ success