Why move it for mental health?

為什麼要為精神健康Move it?

Physical and Mental Health are codependent. Studies show that physical health plays a significant role in managing some mental health conditions, in particular depression and anxiety. While depression and anxiety can make one less willing to participate in sports activities or join a gym, exercise has actually been proven to decrease many of the symptoms of these disorders. Acute anxiety symptoms and panic disorder both improve when regular physical activity is integrated into daily life.

 

Currently only 33% of adults achieve the recommended levels of weekly physical activity. Although in Hong Kong the number of citizens achieving the level of the “baseline indicator” is higher (48.6%), more than half of population still do not achieve recommended levels of physical activity. According to the study conducted by Hong Kong Community Sports Committee, only 46.9% reported engaging in leisure sports activities.

This is a significant problem among youth as well. The World Health Organisation recommends at least one hour of moderate to vigorous exercise per day for young people aged 5 to 17; only 4.7% of Hong Kong’s youth achieves this much physical activity.

 

Depression and anxiety are recurrent, and often life-long diseases that come with many societal and individual costs. Anxiety and depression are prevalent causes of psychosocial impairment, physical illness and mortality. Both disorders affect millions of individuals worldwide regardless of their income, gender and ethnicity; depression being more common than tuberculosis, ischaemic heart disease and cerebrovascular disease.  

 

Despite many available treatments for depression and anxiety, including talking therapy and medication, many individuals experiencing these disorders do not experience symptom remission, which highlights the importance of integrating of healthy physical activity into daily life. Physical activity has been found to have positive effect on mood and creativity just after one session. Apart from mental health benefits, exercising also improves cardiovascular and metabolic systems, which are crucial for healthy functioning.

 

Increased fitness levels have also positively correlated with better body satisfaction and higher self-esteem. Physical activity has also been linked to decreased stress levels, and better mood and emotional regulation. Furthermore many studies have found physical activity to be as effective as other alternative treatments for anxiety and depression, such as pharmacological and psychological therapies. More benefits can be found here.

 

Studies have investigated the efficacy of different kinds of sports on the mental condition of individuals, and have found that all types of physical activity positively influence mental well-being. Every individual can find an activity that suits them best, and start the way towards better physical and mental health. Move it for Mental Health seeks to do just this.

身體健康與精神健康是互相影響的。研究顯示身體健康對於一些精神健康情況有重要的影響,尤其是抑鬱與焦慮。雖然抑鬱與焦慮能讓我們減少做運動或加入健身室的意欲,但運動被證實能減低這些精神健康問題的症狀。在日常生活中加入恆常的運動習慣有助改善嚴重的焦慮症症狀及驚恐症。

目前僅有33%成年人達到每週建議運動量。雖然在香港達到最低運動量的市民較高(46.8%),但仍有超過一半以上的人仍然還沒達到建議運動量。根據香港社區體育事務委員會,僅有46.9%的人反映有進行休閒體育活動。

 

青少年的問題也同樣重要。根據世界衛生組織建議,5-17歲兒童及青少年每日應該最少有一小時中至強度的運動量:僅有4.7%香港兒童及青少年達到建議標準(香港遊樂場協會,2018)。

 

抑鬱症與焦慮症會反覆復發,經常是伴隨一生的疾病,而且會帶來很多社會與個人損失。抑鬱症與焦慮症也是社交、心理、身體疾病及致命的主要成因。兩種疾病影響世界上過百萬人,不論是他們的收入、性別及種族;而抑鬱症更比肺結核、缺血性心臟病及腦血管疾病更普遍。

儘管現時對於抑鬱症與焦慮正有很多可行的治療,包括心理治療及藥物治療,很多經歷這些疾病的人的症狀並沒有減退。這樣更凸顯了在日常生活中加入運動的重要性。研究證實,僅一節運動亦有助改善心情及創意力。除了精神健康的益處外,運動更改善心肺健康及新陳代謝系統,對於健康尤其重要。

 

增加運動量與身體滿意程度和提高自尊心息息相關。運動亦與減低壓力程度、改善情緒及情緒調節有關。除此之外,對比其他治療,包括藥物治療及心理治療,很多研究證實運動更有助改善焦慮症及抑鬱症。按[此]了解更多其他運動的益處。

 

研究調查了不同類型的運動對於個人精神健康狀況的成效,也發現所有運動對於精神健康皆有正面的影響。每個人也能尋找最適合他們的運動,開始朝向更好的身體精神健康。為精神健康Move it 也正想達到這個目標。

 

References:

 

Paluska, S. A., Schwenk, T. L. (2000). Physical and Mental Health: Current Concepts. Sports medicine. 29(3), 167-181.

 

Community Sports Committee. (2018). Study on Sport for All - the Participation Patterns of Hong Kong People in Physical Activities.

 

Taylor, C. B., Sallis, J. F., Needle, R. (2007). The Relation of Physical Activity & Exercise to Mental Health. Public Health Reports. 100(2).

 

Hong Kong Playground Association (2018).
 

AUTHOR: Mira Polezhayeva

Student, Monash University

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