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Exercise makes you happier than having money, according to Yale and Oxford research.
- Researchers at Yale and Oxford may have proven exercise is more important to your mental health than your economic status.
- The scientists found that, while those who exercised regularly tended to feel bad for around 18 days a year, non-active participants felt bad for 35 days more on average.
- The team also noticed that certain sports that involve socializing can have more of a positive effect on your mental health than others.
It’s clear exercise has health benefits both physical and mental — but what if we could actually prove it was more important to your mental health than your economic status?
According to a study carried out by researchers at Yale and Oxford, we may have done just that.
In the study, published in The Lancet, scientists collected data about the physical behavior and mental mood of over 1.2 million Americans.
Participants were asked to answer the following question: “How many times have you felt mentally unwell in the past 30 days, for example, due to stress, depression, or emotional problems?”
The participants were also asked about their income and physical activities. They were able to choose from 75 types of physical activity — from lawn-mowing, childcare, and housework to weight lifting, cycling, and running.
Those who keep more active tend to be happier overall
The scientists found that, while those who exercised regularly tended to feel bad for around 18 days a year, non-active participants felt bad for 35 days more on average.
In addition, the researchers found that physically active people feel just as good as those who don’t do sports, but who earn around $25,000 more a year.
Essentially, you’d have to earn quite a lot more for your earnings to give you the same happiness-boosting effect sport has.
That doesn’t mean, however, that the more sport you do, the happier you are.
Too much exercise can be detrimental to your mental health
Exercise is clearly good for you but how much is too much?
“The relationship between sport duration and mental load is U-shaped,” said study author Adam Chekroud of Yale University in an interview with Die Welt. The study found that physical activity only contributes to better mental well-being when it falls within a certain time frame.
According to the study, three to five training sessions each lasting between 30 to 60 minutes per week is ideal.
More than this, however, can have the opposite effect — in fact, the mental health of those participants who exercised for longer than three hours a day suffered more than that of those who weren’t particularly physically active.
The scientists also noticed that certain sports that involve socializing — i.e. team sports — can have more of a positive effect on your mental health than others.
Despite the fact that neither cycling nor aerobics and fitness technically counts as team sports, these activities can also have a considerable positive effect on your mental health.
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From helping you reach your fitness goals to figuring out how to exercise safely with a chronic condition, learn the top 10 benefits of personal training and why it could be one of the best investments you’ll make in your overall health and well-being.
Most of us work harder in the presence of others. Having a trainer by your side can provide the encouragement, energy and motivation you need to jumpstart your routine. A trainer can also help you set goals, create a plan to accomplish them and celebrate the day you reach them.
Do you find it difficult to stick with a program or habit? A trainer can hold you accountable and help you overcome all the excuses you might use to avoid your commitment to exercise. It’s a lot harder to skip the gym when you know someone is waiting for you.
Fitness can be confusing. There is a lot of information to sort through. Eat this, not that. Cardio before or after strength training? Your trainer can help you find credible information and provide direction on your fitness journey. A trainer can help remove the guesswork so you can put all your energy toward accomplishing your goals.
The gym can be intimidating. Working with a trainer allows you to become confident with how to perform exercises, use machines and navigate the facility. After a few sessions, you will feel ready to tackle the weight room on your own. Even better, an ego boost during exercise can promote stronger self-confidence and self-efficacy, which can help you stick with your exercise program over the long term.
5. Avoid Injury
If you are new to exercise or find that some movements are painful, it is worth hiring a trainer to be certain that you are moving in a safe and effective way. Taking the time to learn proper exercise technique can improve your results and prevent annoying injuries.
6. Individual Attention
When it comes to fitness, everyone is different. Your unique body mechanics, experience, goals, fitness level, likes and dislikes can guide your trainer in creating a plan that is specific to your needs. With a program that fits, you are more likely to maintain the habit and see results.
7. Sport-specific Training
Do you want to run your first 5K or prepare for a backpacking trip? Looking to shave some strokes off your golf game? Your trainer can design a fitness program specific to your sport, which will improve your performance and reduce your chance of injury during the event(s).
8. Training With Medical Conditions
Exercise is beneficial for preventing or managing many common chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and hypertension. However, exercising with a medical condition requires additional precautions. A knowledgeable trainer with experience training clients with chronic conditions can design a program that ensures your safety and provides a positive exercise experience.
9. Aging Gracefully
Our bodies change as we age. Perhaps the exercises you used to do no longer work with your body, or maybe you’ve stopped seeing results. A trainer can help you adjust or adapt your program as you age, which will allow you to maintain functionality and strength.
Believe it or not, exercise can be enjoyable. A savvy personal trainer can make exercise both effective and fun. Group or buddy training can be a great way to increase enjoyment, make exercise social and attain the services of a trainer for a cheaper rate. And simply working with a trainer who you like and respect can be enough to provide you with more gratification from your workouts.
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Working with a personal trainer is one of the most successful ways to improve your health and fitness. Personal trainers are used by people of all fitness, age and economic levels to help make lifestyle changes not easily achieved by themselves. A 2014 study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found those who used a trainer had greater improvements in their lean body mass, and other measures of health-related fitness, than those who completed self-directed training.
Consider the following benefits of hiring a personal trainer:
1. Build Confidence– Feel uncomfortable in the gym? Don’t know how to use all the machines? A trainer will show you the correct way to use equipment in the gym and give you a plan.
2. Accountability– Do you find it difficult to keep working out consistently? Having an appointment with a trainer might be what you need to get you to the gym when you may otherwise find a reason not to go.
3. Clarity– Fitness, and nutrition can be very confusing. Every day seems to bring a new diet or workout trend. A trainer can help you sift through all of the information out there and provide direction to help you find the right path for your fitness journey.
4. Expert Workout Advice– A personal trainer will help you define achievable goals and plan how to meet them. They will create a workout routine specific to your goals and needs while also making allowances for your current physical condition and medical background.
5. Improve Overall Fitness– A personal trainer will create an individualized program that improves your overall conditioning and develop the specific skills you need. They will monitor your progress and fine-tune your program as you go, ensuring your progress and helping you work your way off plateaus.
6. Avoid Injury– Having a trainer demonstrate the correct form, and watch you complete each exercise to ensure you are completing the move in a safe way, will help to avoid any potential injury. Also, your trainer will plan your workouts to maximize the benefits and reduce the possibility of injury or overtraining.
7. Focus On You– If you have a unique medical concern, a trainer can work with your physician, physical therapist or other health care provider to plan a safe and efficient program that will speed your recovery or enable you to reach your health goals.
8. Motivation– Ever feel like you can’t do one more rep or keep going for one more minute? A trainer will push you (safely) to do just one (or two!) more.
9. Fun – Doing the same old thing at the gym might get boring (and may prevent you from reaching your goals). A trainer can change up your workout and show you new exercises to keep things interesting, maybe even fun!
10. Support– Your trainer will be your biggest cheerleader and source of encouragement. I know most trainers became certified for the same reason I did because we want you to succeed in meeting your goals and live a happy and healthy life. A trainer will work with you to overcome any resistance or barriers to creating a healthier life and meeting your health goals.
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There are so many reasons why a Personal Trainer is essential to achieving your fitness goals, whether they be weight loss-based, sports-driven or for athletic purposes. Here, we’ve put together the most critical reasons why you should have a Personal Trainer, as well as the benefits that you are likely to achieve.
1. It’s Educational
One of the primary reasons that someone should have a Personal Trainer is that they are trained in teaching others how to exercise. And while exercise in itself is only a part of fitness, with nutrition and lifestyle playing an essential role in the overall picture if you don’t get exercise right then you will never achieve your goals.
The importance of education when exercising is important for two primary reasons:
1) If you don’t know which exercises are most effective for the goals you have, you are unlikely to achieve those goals. For example, if your goal is to build core strength but you spend all your time on cardio exercises, then you are unlikely to hit your goal.
2) Education when performing exercises is essential in reducing the risk of injury. Many people every year are seriously injured by performing exercises they have not received training for, and this can impact their health and fitness for a long time. Having someone trained in how to execute certain tasks will greatly reduce the level of risk and increase the effectiveness of your fitness routine.
2. They Help Perfect Form
Having a Personal Trainer beside you to demonstrate the correct posture and technique is invaluable. A Personal Trainer will ensure clients are performing exercises correctly and efficiently, in order to maximise results. If your form when exercising is not correct, then you are at increased risk of injury as well as not achieving your goals (because nothing kills a dream like 10 weeks of prescribed bed rest!).
3. They Can Help With Your Unique Requirements
Everybody is different, and that means everyone’s abilities and requirements are different when it comes to exercise. This could be anything from having an old injury that requires special exercises to having a phobia that may impact on where or how you workout.
For example, if you have an old knee injury that required surgery, but since then you haven’t done anything to rebuild the muscles or improve mobility, then you are going to need different exercises and goals than an athlete who is training to run a marathon. This is where a Personal Trainers experience can make a huge difference to your training program.
4. They Help You Set Realistic Goals
Everyone wants to achieve their goals straight away, whether they be weight loss, cheese grater abs or Hulk-like strength. But these are not always achievable, and if you don’t hit them then you may be discouraged and backslide.
A Personal Trainer will not only help you set realistic goals that you will be able to achieve – if you put in the effort, of course – but they will also be able to keep you on track to hit those goals. For example, if your goal is to achieve a ‘bikini body’ for summer, it’s not just about doing 100 crunches a day for a month to work your abs. It’s about altering your diet to eat the correct foods, mixing cardio and weights to work the right muscles, and setting a timeframe in which this can be achieved.
5. They Can Help With Specific Goals, Such As Training For An Event
As well as helping their clients set realistic goals, Personal Trainers are the perfect tool to help you achieve a specific goal. This is ideal for those who are training for a specific event, or need to achieve a certain level of fitness before they are able to do something they really want.
For example, if you have a bucket list with ‘Skydiving’ on it but are over the maximum weight, then hiring a Personal Trainer to assist with helping you lose weight is a great start to achieving this goal. Or if your goal is to be able to run a marathon in six months, then hiring a Personal Trainer to put you on the right track could be all you need to complete a marathon.
6. They Hold You Accountable
How many times have you gone to bed and said to yourself, ‘Tomorrow I’m going to wake up, go to the gym, and do an hour workout before I get ready for work’, and then woken up and decided to sleep for another hour instead of exercising?
This is where a Personal Trainer is critical to ensuring that you commit and stick to your fitness goals. If you’ve made an appointment to meet you trainer for a session, then you are far more likely to still go than if you are just telling yourself you should go to the gym.
7. No Wasted Time = Maximum Results
There are two types of people who go to the gym:
1) Those who wander in, spend 10 minutes on one machine and then drift slowly over to another, before half-heartedly trying bicep curls for five reps and then walking out.
2) Those who have a plan in mind, and hit the machines with a purpose. They generally have a set amount of reps they do in sets of two or three, and they’ll know exactly what they’re doing on each machine.
It’s fairly obvious that the first group will not be achieving their fitness goals unless they get some help and have someone to direct them, so if you know that you’re one of those people then you should be enlisting the help of a Personal Trainer ASAP.
8. It’s Not Just Fitness They Can Help With
When completing their Certificate III in Fitness, every student is required to complete a module on nutrition and how it can affect fitness. Personal Trainers who complete their Certificate IV in Fitness have to then complete additional work on nutrition, and a number of Personal Trainers also add on additional education to their program by completing a Nutrition course such as those offered by the Australian Institute of Fitness.
By choosing a Personal Trainer who has undergone specific nutrition education, you know that they will be providing the right nutritional advice to achieve your goals.
9. They Improve Your Mental Health
It has long been known that physical exercise can help with mental health issues such as depression, and that it is a recommended part of treatment by many medical health professionals. Having a Personal Trainer to help with your exercise plan when you suffer from mental health problems can help with motivation, with choosing the right exercises to release the most endorphins, and also just to have another shoulder to lean on.
Which leads us to our next point…
10. They’re An Unofficial Therapist
Let’s be honest, most of the time when exercising with your Personal Trainer you will be telling them about your week, how work is going, and what’s wrong with your life at the time. This is normal!
A Personal Trainer is there to help with your fitness goals, yes, but they’re also there to help improve your overall wellbeing. They care about how stressed you are, because that will impact how motivated you are in your sessions. They care if you’re unhappy in a relationship, as this could result in eating unhealthily.
There are myriad ways in which having a Personal Trainer can be like having an unofficial therapist.
11. They Help You Form Good Habits
It can take weeks to form good habits, and even longer to break bad ones – and trying to do it on your own is hard work. Having a Personal Trainer is like having a good angel on your shoulder encouraging you in the right direction. They can help to argue with the bad angel in your head, and keep you on track to achieve your fitness goals.
12. Personalised Training Plan
There are always going to be some exercises that you enjoy more than others, beyond simple capability. For example, just because you can physically do burpees doesn’t mean that you always want to, but you might really like doing squat jumps and sit ups instead.
A Personal Trainer will be able to tailor your training plan to suit you and what you enjoy, as well as encourage you to do the exercises that are best to achieve your goals.
As well as this, there are always going to be some days when the last thing you feel like doing is a hard workout, and so having a Personal Trainer means that they can tailor your exercise for that day to both accommodate your mood while still making the session helpful.
13. They Fit Into Your Schedule
Regardless of whether the only time you have available to train is at a ridiculously early hour before work, or on your lunch break, or mid-afternoon before the kids come home from school – a Personal Trainer is one of the most versatile professions in terms of hours. They understand that different people have different availabilities, and so they will tailor appointment times to suit you.
14. Increased Flexibility For Location
Not everyone enjoys the atmosphere of a crowded gym, or having to wait for the machine you want to use to become available. The benefit of having a Personal Trainer is that you aren’t limited to working out where equipment is available – not only will your PT have some equipment that they can bring with them, but you can also choose the location in which you exercise.
Whether it’s in the comfort of your own home or in your neighbourhood park, with a Personal Trainer you have the flexibility to workout wherever suits you best.
15. They Challenge You
Are you getting bored with your fitness routine? Have you progressed beyond the exercises you know and have plateaued in your fitness? A Personal Trainer is what you need to take you to the next level, and continuously challenge your abilities.
Don’t think you can lift that medicine ball?
Positive you won’t fit back into your favourite dress?
Doubt you’ll be able to compete in a charity run next year?
A Personal Trainer is your life coach, nutrition guide and encourager all in one, and without them your fitness goals are that much harder to achieve. So what are you waiting for? Find a professional Personal Trainer today to help achieve your fitness goals.
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Are you interested in a career in personal training? Here are some of the amazing benefits that come with this career!
Whether you work in a gym or at home, you will be able to stay healthy and keep in shape whenever you have some free time. This could be at the start of your day or when you are waiting for your next client. You will have all the proper equipment you need and keeping in shape will attract more clients!
Help other people
One of the main benefits of being a personal trainer is that every day you help your clients achieve their goals and become fitter, healthier and more confident. You have the ability to help your clients change their lives for the better and that is very fulfilling.
Turn your passion into a career
If you decide to become a personal trainer because you are passionate about health and fitness then this is the perfect career as you will be able to do something you love every day. You will have the knowledge and skills to teach other people and help them improve their lives whilst fitting in some time to workout yourself.
You can work in a gym, health club, sports club, hotel, on a cruise ship or you could even set up your own business and work in your own gym. The opportunities are endless and personal trainers can work almost anywhere in the world!
Meeting new people
You will meet and work with all sorts of people being a personal trainer. The social side makes the job very interesting and you will also have to help clients with different needs and goals so each day will be different.
Choose your own hours
If you work for yourself, you can set your own hours and enjoy a flexible schedule. However, you should consider clients who may only be able to train early in the morning or late at night due to being at work during the day. However, you can still choose which hours suit you best and you wont have the same work hours every single day.
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