How Can Exercise Help with Depression in Kids?

Posted on August 2, 2019

Written by : Megan DeLuca, MEd, CPT,PTS Fitness Blogger

Most of the research on exercise and depression has been conducted on adults, but symptoms often strike in childhood and can be as traumatic as later-in-life cases. Scientists are now turning their attention to the mood-boosting power of exercise in children as young as 6 years old and finding similar positive results. They recommend that the focus on exercise should be taught not just for the short-term physical benefits, but also for long-term mental health benefits. Their study found that it’s not the number of sedentary hours a child would log a day. Even kids that spent most of their time sitting would benefit from exercise as long as they got some moderate-to-vigorous exercise throughout the day. They conclude that doctors should advise children with depression, as well as their parents, to be more physically active. Given that exercise does so much good for the heart, brain, and metabolism, they will benefit in many ways no matter what.