Regular exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. People who lead an active life are more likely to live longer and less likely to develop serious diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Exercise not only makes you physically fitter, it also improves your mental health and general sense of wellbeing.
Everybody can benefit from doing some exercise. It’s important that physical activity is a part of life for children, adults and older people.
It doesn’t have to be a vigorous workout and you can find ways to fit physical activity into your daily routine – it may be as simple as walking to and from the shops. If you have never exercised or haven’t for a while, it needn’t take much effort to get started.
Doing regular aerobic activity can help prevent major illnesses. Aerobic exercise is anything that uses oxygen, raises your heart rate and makes you slightly breathless, for example brisk walking or cycling. Whether you’re just starting to exercise or have always been active, make sure you take steps to stay injury free and able to perform to the best of your ability. Nutrition and hydration also play key roles in this – it’s important to eat the correct nutrients to provide the fuel you need to exercise and drink water when you feel thirsty.
Some of the health benefits of aerobic exercise are described below.
With about a third of all children in England aged between two and 15 now classed as being overweight or obese, it’s more important than ever to get children active. Physical activity in childhood has a number of benefits including healthy growth and development. It helps children maintain a healthy weight and gives them an opportunity to interact with other people and make friends. Activities that put stress on children’s bones, including jumping and skipping, can help protect against osteoporosis in later life and develop strong, healthy bones.
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This information was published by Bupa's Health Information Team and is based on reputable sources of medical evidence. It has been reviewed by appropriate medical or clinical professionals. Photos are only for illustrative purposes and do not reflect every presentation of a condition. The content is intended only for general information and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional. For more details on how we produce our content and its sources, visit the about our health information page.
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