How Does Exercise Affect Mental Function?

Everyone knows by now that exercise is one of the best things you can do for your body. It helps you live longer, improves your mood, and basically enhances every aspect of your daily life. So, we all know that exercise makes you physically stronger, and more resilient. But can it also increase your mental capacity? Does it affect your memory? Well, it turns out that if your mood is better, your brain performs at a higher capacity. Boost your mood, boost the flow of oxygen and blood to your body, and boost your brain!

How is My Mood Affected by Exercise?

How Does Exercise Effect Mental Function?Think about the last time you got some exercise—it might be anything, from going to gym, to running, biking, skiing, or even skydiving. Anything that gets your heart rate up. Well, how did you feel when you finished the activity? Probably great. That’s because exercise released endorphins into your body. Endorphins equal pleasure and happy feelings. So just remember, even if you don’t want to get up and hit the gym or go for a run, try to imagine how great you will feel afterwards. When you exercise, you gain an enormous boost in confidence and self esteem. The same goes for anytime you practice and improve a skill like playing a sport, drawing, writing, or lifting weights. When you get better, you feel better. And you feel better about yourself. This is of course in addition to the obvious: the more you exercise, the more attractive your body becomes. How’s that for a mood booster?

If you feel better, you are less likely to experience anxiety or depression. And if you already suffer from those afflictions, regular exercise will get rid of those horrible feelings. Just remember not to overdo it. Too much physical activity can make things go the other way, and you will become exhausted.

What Does Exercise Have to Do With Cognition?

First, let’s remember what we talk about when we talk about cognition. We’re talking about problem solving, reasoning, focus, memory, attention, decision making, and the ability to learn. All of these things are a form of processing information, and they require all five senses.

How Does Exercise Effect Mental Function?According to a famous study done at Scotland’s University of Edinburgh, those people who engage in regular physical activities experience less shrinking of the brain than those who did no exercise. Think of this a rejuvenating process.

We know that exercise is related to Alzheimer’s. If you don’t exercise regularly, you have an increased risk of getting the disease. Another fascinating fact is that those already suffering from the condition can experience a reversal of symptoms simply by performing physical exercise. This simple fact tells us that leading a sedentary life can cause not only physical problems, such as obesity, but it can negatively impact your mental well being.


We’ve learned the benefits of physical activities—whatever they may be—are great for both your mind and body. So start today! Get up and move your body!