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The Positives of Staying Active Whilst Studying

Why keeping physically active is important while studying?


We have all been there – whether it be for exams or a presentation, studying can be a very stressful time. Stress is a heightened state causing a physiological change – this could be an increased heart rate, problems sleeping, anxiety or forgetfulness – not great for that exam! But some degree of stress is good – it primes us to tackle the task at hand and achieve the desired outcome.

When that deadline approaches, the only thing on our minds is that deadline. But how does this affect us? This prolonged and heightened stress can be very harmful for us – physically, emotionally and mentally.

So – how do we combat this?

We have a tool for this – and everyone can do it! It is to keep active!

Why keeping physically active is important while studying?

  • Physical exercise/activity should be considered as part of a healthy lifestyle. The World Health Organisation recommends 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise 5 days a week. This is great for physical and mental health.
  • Good exercise habits protect against the harmful effects of stress and chronic health conditions, such as, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and illness (nothing worse than being sick for that presentation or exam!)
  • Exercise is great for good mental health and wellbeing, which can help regulate stress when you are hitting the books for exams! This regulation helps with getting a better night’s sleep, rather than worrying about what you know or don’t know.
  • All of this amounts to a better level of concentration and improved memory. Exercise has been proven to fight the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease and other dementia’s!

Can I exercise late at night?

  • Going to the gym late at night will not disrupt your sleep – rather, it can improve your self-rated sleep quality and can reduce daytime sleepiness (more energy for studying!) Exercising before you sleep at night would be suitable for those who work/at school or are busy throughout the day
  • At the end of the day, the right type of exercise is one that you can do consistently and you can enjoy at a time that suits your schedule


Why is it important to exercise consistently?

  • Consistently exercising is important for progressively working towards your physical goals or health goals
  • Taking a “break” for more than 1-2 weeks from exercise has some negative repercussions:
    • You lose your strength – in a hospital setting, for one week of total bed rest, 40% of muscle mass is lost (you will need to work on those gains again!)
    • You predispose yourself to injury when returning to exercise. You will have to progress slowly, starting at a low level, to reduce your injury risk and another lay off from exercise!

Take home message: Keep up your exercise for physical and mental health, stress reduction and to prevent injury!


This information is thanks to our Support Local Partner Back in Motion Aspendale Gardens!