Physical activity plays a significant part in everyday lives, however, a considerable amount of what we used to do is done by machines. We drive cars, so we tend to walk less, vacuum cleaners make cleaning easier and washing is done by a machine. All these factors contribute to those who let themselves believe that ‘they are not good enough’ or say, ‘I’m too tired’ or even, ‘I think it will make me feel worse’. (CITE) The role of physical activity on mental health is overlooked by a majority of the population but is it an important subject to discuss, due to many people who are still in debate to whether physical activity is an effective tool or not towards the state of an individual’s mental health (CITE). There are limited studies that believe physical activity does not have an impact on an individual’s mental health. Yet, several studies have found that exercise plays a major part in helping with mental health issues such as depression and anxiety as well as mental wellbeing. It has been proven to not only strengthen physical fitness, thus decreasing the risk of chronic diseases; new evidence suggests that physical activity triggers chemicals within the body, sending a positive feeling throughout the bodily system (CITE).
Even though it is not common that exercise is used as a treatment regimen for people who suffer from mental health problems (such as depression and anxiety), many studies believe that exercise should (CITE).Despite vast evidence demonstrating that physical activity is associated with the decrease in mental health-related issues, few people engage in a regular physical activity (Paluska ; Schwenk, 2000). Individual’s with mental health disorders constitute a generous portion of the population in which physical inactivity may subsidize to increase mental health problems, although on a bigger scale; studies illustrate depression and anxiety are significantly prevalent causes of psychosocial impairment, physical illness and mortality throughout the world (CITE). These findings primarily come down to an individual’s neurodevelopment readiness, psychosocial influences, maturation and their growth motor development. The rate of maturation allows the continuous process of change to conclude a person’s skill and complexity of function, their acquisition, and refinement of behaviors, the emergence of psychological attributes, ideas and understanding and their changes in growth and development (CITE). If a person has a slower rate of maturation generally the individual may feel as though they are not ready for physical activity; this is due to the individuals perceived ability, towards performing skills, unwillingness to challenge themselves, lack of effort and ultimately avoidance of participation, this can continue throughout a person’s whole life. Additionally, while neurodevelopment is at its peak, physical influences such as parents have a very authoritative role, they determine an individuals rate of growth motor development, to which will impact the level of participation in physical activity.
It could be as simple as kicking a ball, throwing a ball; having not been taught the correct technique at an early age can affect the way an individual perceives themselves, conclusively affecting their mental health. Even though there are several effective therapeutic modalities, many patients with mental health disorders are being inadequately or inconsistently treated (CITE). As such, physical activity may be an important, underutilized assistant to currently accepted pharmacological and psychological therapies.