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Physical exercise is referred to as any activity which helps increase or maintain physical fitness and the physical well-being of a person. In order to achieve physical fitness one has to exercise regularly, consume the correct amount and form of nutrition, and take sufficient rest. Rest helps the body to rejuvenate, and therefore, adequate amount of rest is necessary for the body. There are numerous proven benefits of physical activities, and we will get into these in the following sections.

Benefits

Regular and proper physical activity of any kind helps in preventing several conditions like chronic health problems and obesity. Exercises have been known to calm the brain and thereby lead to better sleep. Apart from these benefits, there are several other advantages as well. Let's find out what are they.
  • Exercising has been known to calm a person down by releasing the 'happy' chemicals in the brain and thereby bringing down the stress levels in the body.
  • Regular exercising helps in boosting the self-confidence and self-esteem of a person. It has been found to elevate the mood of a person and prevent occurrences of depression.
  • Regular exercise is known to fight chronic diseases like osteoporosis, heart diseases, and high blood pressure. People with high cholesterol have benefited from regular exercise--exercising boosts high density lipoprotein (HDL), which is the good cholesterol, and decreases the triglycerides levels in the body. Certain types of cancers and type 2 diabetes can also be prevented with regular exercise.
  • For people who want to lose weight, including some form of physical activity (either at home or by joining a fitness center) is a must to lose the excess pounds.
  • It also helps to build muscular strength, increase endurance, and improve flexibility.
  • Physical exercises are important, rather, necessary for the physical and psychological fitness, development, and well being of a child.
Types and Benefits

There are three main types under which all the exercises are categorized. The categorization is made depending on the effect of the exercise on the overall well-being of the person. The first of the category are the flexibility exercises. The most common example of flexibility exercises are the different stretches. They help to improve endurance, and the range of motion of the muscles as well as the joints.

Aerobic exercises form the next type--exercises like walking, running, jogging, swimming, cycling, playing tennis, step aerobics, skipping rope, running up and down the stairs, hiking, rowing, cross-country skiing, etc. are all aerobic exercises. These activities focus on a person's cardiovascular health and endurance.

Exercises that include weight training and strength training, or sprinting are all a part of anaerobic exercises. These exercises focus on increasing the strength and endurance of the muscles.

Yoga exercises are known to focus on all 3 types of exercises, and are therefore often called the best form of exercises. They help in increasing the flexibility of the body, along with the endurance. Certain yoga poses are also known to improve the condition of the heart along with strengthening the muscles. A number of heart patients are known to have benefited from this form of exercise.

Depending on each person's choice, one can include any form of exercise in their daily routine. If it is not possible to opt for physical exercises everyday, it should be done at least thrice a week for about 30-45 minutes. Apart from these exercises, one can stop the use of elevators, escalators, and using a vehicle for short distances. All of these will add up to the total workout. Doing housework at a quicker pace, gardening, washing the car, and other such physical activities around the house will also prove beneficial as well.