Social Exercise is Good for Your Health

The more you enjoy being a physically active person, the more likely you’ll stay a physically active person.

One way to do so is to make time for social exercise.

We know that improving social connections can improve both your physical and mental health.

And according to the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee Report, “physically active individuals sleep better, feel better, and function better.”

So – why not combine the two by having shared physically active experiences with others?

In my own life, I thoroughly enjoy my solo running time when I can clear my mind and destress after a hectic day.

But I also look forward to taking group ballroom dance lessons as part of a dance community, biking with my friends on the weekend or learning a new sport like pickleball.

No matter where you are in your health journey, I recommend you take advantage of the warmer weather months to look for ways to add social exercise to your life.

Here are examples to consider:

1-Plan Social Exercise into Your Daily Routine

Here’s where you need to look at your daily schedule and see where you can fit in some social exercise.

Schedule some walking time with a work colleague during your lunch hour, meet a neighbor for a morning walk in your community or do a family bike ride on the weekend.

With a little planning ahead such as bringing walking shoes to work or making sure your bikes are tuned up, you can start reaping the benefits of social exercise.

2-Take a Class

Is there a new sport or physically active hobby you’ve been wanting to try?

Check out classes offered in and around your community and ask a friend to join you.

Whether it’s tennis, dance, yoga or a spin class, having an exercise buddy can make an activity more enjoyable.

You’ll also be accountable to each other which may help you stay on track.

3-Join a Group Fitness Walk or Run

Charity group fitness opportunities can be a great way to be active and contribute to a worthy cause.

Look for options in your community or at work.

Having shared experiences can make you feel more connected to your community and those around you.

Take time this summer to add social exercise to your daily routine.


Robert Kushner, MD

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