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Movement and Mental Health

Blog post

Written by Tyesha McCool-Riley, Office of Community and Civic Life

Published
Now more than ever, we need tools and resources to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. This week we are sharing an article by Tyesha McCool-Riley. Tyesha is the Mental Health Program Specialist with the City of Portland Office of Community and Civic Life. 
Person kneels while gardening for exercise

Mental health impacts your ability or inability to live, love, laugh, and learn as mental health is the underpinning for emotions, perception, tolerance, communication, learning, judgement, resilience, and self-worth.  When you tend to your mental just as you tend to your physical health, you are moving toward higher levels of functioning and holistic wellbeing. We cannot speak of mental health without acknowledging the significance of the connection between our minds and body.

Your brain is the control center for your body’s movement, and the way you move influences the way you think and feel. Moving is good for you, while lack of movement can be associated with poor mental health and physical health. Moderate movement, such as walking, gardening, yoga, aerobics, and stretching can tend to lead to more pleasure and a positive mood.

Getting your body moving can reduce anxiety/stress; increase endorphins: the feel-good hormone; help your sleep; and improve productivity. Try including 30 minutes of regular exercise every single day to your schedule. When your bodies feel well, it can positively impact your mental wellness. 


Check out Sunday Parkways Fitness at Home where you will find stress-relieving workouts for all ages and fitness levels.