MAY IS MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH 💜
Mental health is a critical component of holistic wellbeing, but often overlooked in medical health care. Your mental health is just as important as physical health. Considering the mental illness is so prevalent in the U.S. it is critical that we start to talking about how we address and treat mental illness in a clinical and subclinical population.
Exercise is Medicine is an American College of Sports Medicine global health initiative developed to promote and integrate exercise and physical activity in healthcare settings. PSA 🗣 MENTAL HEALTHCARE IS HEALTHCARE. So let’s start talking about the role that physical activity and exercise plays in improving mental health outcomes. Also my dissertation looks at the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of clinical mental health professionals including exercise in treatment.
The research is limited and begs for more rigorous methodology, but emerging data suggests:
✅ Exercise is beneficial for adults from 18-65 with a diagnosed clinical disorder or subclinical symptoms.
✅ Moderate intensity aerobic training elicits short term and long term benefits.
✅ Supervised, structured resistance training should be incorporated at least twice per week.
✅ Significant improvement over 12 weeks when used as a single or adjunctive therapy.
Exercise has one additional advantage over traditional pharmacotherapy – the added benefits of physical health that results from regular exercise. The work to prepare and support mental health professionals to prescribe exercise and refer to fitness professionals is important now to move this initiative forward.