Being active helps you to stay healthy. There are many different ways you can get active and finding a way that suits you is the key. You may enjoy walking, running, dancing, surfing, going to the gym, playing a team sport or swimming.
Whatever it is you do, you will get many benefits from it, including:
Suggestions for becoming active
- Improving your strength, fitness, and confidence which helps you to achieve other things in life.
- Allowing you to do new things like play sport, go bushwalking etc.
- Having more energy.
- Increasing your flexibility and mobility.
- Helping you enjoy what your body can do.
- Reducing stress.
- Helping you to feel better about yourself.
- Improve sleep.
- Improving metabolic rate which helps prevent weight gain.
- Helping to manage anger.
Everyone has a different level of fitness, and exercising at a pace that is right for you is important. Exercise shouldn't cause you pain, it can be fun and doesn't have to be organised or cost money.
If you have medical difficulties or are feeling pain when you exercise it is a good idea to talk with your local doctor.
Here are some suggestions that may help if you are starting to exercise:
- Start Gradually - Try not to do too much too fast. As a general guide, you should be able to hold a conversation, but not be able to sing while you are exercising. Try to remember any amount of exercise is beneficial. You may want to start by using the stairs instead of the escalator or going for a 5 or 10 minute walk. As being active becomes easier you may increase the time and intensity of what you are doing.
- Exercise with a Friend - It may be helpful and more fun if you exercise with a friend. You may like to walk together, go for a run or a swim. Having someone else may help to motivate you. It may also be a way to catch up.
- If Possible Make it Part of your Routine - Sometimes with all the stuff we do it is easy to miss out on doing something active. It may be helpful to set aside a time in the day for exercising. Before or after dinner or before school or work may be a good time. Walking or riding to school or work instead of driving may be a good way to make it part of your day.
- Try to Make it Fun - Being active shouldn't be a chore and choosing something you enjoy may make exercising more fun. You may want to kick a football with friends, have a hit of tennis, go for a walk while listening to music or take the dog for a walk. Playing a team sport may mean you meet new people while also being active.
Your local doctor or fitness centre should be able to provide you with information about exercise.
This exercise fact sheet is based on an article kindly provided by Reach Out