Stress is the body’s natural response to a perceived threat, which leads to hormonal imbalances and poses health risks. Hence, those struggling with chronic stress and anxiety may find some relief with stress-busting techniques like exercise. The best exercises to reduce stress include aerobics, Yoga, Tai Chi, breathing exercises, and progressive muscle relaxation.
Introduction – How Does Exercise Reduce Stress?
Stress is the body’s natural response to a perceived threat or a stressor. In response to the threat, various hormonal changes occur in the human body. It includes fluctuations in the levels of cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. As a result, those under stress face symptoms like increased heart rate, breathing, perspiration, and blood pressure.
Acute stress is an immediate response to a stressor that dissipates quickly, while chronic stress refers to prolonged stress and anxiety, which may cause other health issues.
Exercise is considered an effective way to manage anxiety and stress. It boosts the production of endorphins, which offer pain and stress relief. It also diverts attention away from stressful thoughts, boosts concentration, and offers mental clarity. Furthermore, exercise improves your physical health, diminishing the ill effects of stress on your body.
Hence, if you are struggling with stress and its underlying symptoms, you can try exercise for better stress management.
5 Exercises For Immediate Stress Relief
- Aerobic Exercises – According to studies, a daily regimen of aerobic exercises may reduce stress and anxiety within a few weeks. Furthermore, aerobic exercises improve heart health, which can be at risk due to stress. So, you can include aerobic exercises like running, dancing, or swimming in your routine to reduce the symptoms of stress. Make sure to practice these daily for more effective results.
- Breathing Exercises – Breathing exercises may have a calming effect on the mind and body. They can remove anxiety-inducing thoughts from your mind and slow down your heart rate. Hence, they may help provide instant as well as long-term protection against stress.
Some breathing techniques that you can try to fight stress & anxiety are alternate nostril breathing and pursed-lip breathing. Practice these whenever you are struck by stress or twice every day for better results.
- Tai Chi – Studies indicate that Tai Chi may improve your psychological well-being and reduce stress or anxiety. This ancient martial art from China is a form of Shadowboxing. It can help improve your core strength and strengthen your muscles. It involves gentle physical movements and stretching that might relax your body. Moreover, it has mood-boosting benefits when practiced regularly. You can find Tai Chi instructors or clubs in your neighborhood to try out this relaxing exercise.
- Yoga – Yoga is a combination of strength training and breathing exercises that are effective against stress and anxiety. The various poses improve muscle strength and reduce the heart rate. Furthermore, breathing and meditation exercises enhance concentration and relax the mind. Thus, Yoga may combat several symptoms of stress and anxiety. You can find other online Yoga classes or an offline instructor to get you started. You may also pair Yoga with anxiety supplements like Brillia for faster results.
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation – Progressive Muscle Relaxation may reduce anxiety and help you sleep better. In this technique, you need to tense up and relax different muscles of your body, one after the other. These muscle groups include your chest, back, arms, legs, and abdomen. First, lie down on your back and breathe slowly. Then start to tense and relax each muscle group one by one. You will feel much more relaxed by the end of the exercise.
Can Anxiety Supplements Be Used For Stress Reduction Along With Exercise?
Anxiety supplements contain ingredients that possess mood-enhancing properties. Hence, they may further complement the benefits of exercise and reduce your stress and anxiety. Brillia is one such homeopathic anxiety supplement that claims to improve concentration and mood while reducing anxiety, stress, and irritability.
It contains one active ingredient that targets the S100B protein present in the brain to reduce anxiety. Many users claim that this supplement helped them with their stress and anxiety, so you can try it out to reduce your symptoms.
Do note that such supplements and exercise may reduce anxiety symptoms, but severe and chronic stress may require medical attention. Apart from following stress-busting exercises, you may need the appropriate medications or psychotherapy to reduce your stress. In these cases, exercise may still improve the efficacy of the other treatments for stress and anxiety.
Other Methods To Reduce Anxiety And Stress That You Can Pair With Exercise:
- Relaxing activities like gardening, nature walks, and art & crafts.
- Socializing with friends and family and sharing your struggles with them for support.
- Joining a support group to connect with people fighting the same symptoms as you.
- Practicing meditation.
- Maintaining a journal to understand your stressors and process them better.
- Therapy and medication, as prescribed by your doctor.
Stress and anxiety are somewhat common in today’s competitive world, where many are racing against time, be it in their personal or professional lives. Hence, some amount of stress from time to time is unavoidable and is usually considered normal. However, if you deal with frequent stress, anxiety attacks, or other physical symptoms of the same, you may need to practice stress management techniques. Chronic stress results in hormonal imbalances and poses a risk of heart disease.
Furthermore, it may manifest as chronic muscle pain, poor concentration, breathing trouble, and various other symptoms that can hamper your quality of life. To combat these symptoms, you can try exercises that slow down you’re breathing and heart rate and release mood-boosting endorphins. With regular exercise, you can relax your mind and strengthen your body to tackle stress.
However, if you deal with severe stress, you may also need to use anxiety supplements, medications, or therapy to alleviate your symptoms. So, consult a doctor who can suggest the best treatment approach. By following these tips, you may be able to handle your everyday stress better and keep its dangerous symptoms at bay. So, try these exercises to calm your mind and body today.