The neurobiological effects of physical exercise are numerous and involve a wide range of interrelated effects on brain structure, brain function, and cognition.[33][34][35][36] A large body of research in humans has demonstrated that consistent aerobic exercise (e.g., 30 minutes every day) induces persistent improvements in certain cognitive functions, healthy alterations in gene expression in the brain, and beneficial forms of neuroplasticity and behavioral plasticity; some of these long-term effects include: increased neuron growth, increased neurological activity (e.g., c-Fos and BDNF signaling), improved stress coping, enhanced cognitive control of behavior, improved declarative, spatial, and working memory, and structural and functional improvements in brain structures and pathways associated with cognitive control and memory.[33][34][35][36][37][38][39][40][41][42] The effects of exercise on cognition have important implications for improving academic performance in children and college students, improving adult productivity, preserving cognitive function in old age, preventing or treating certain neurological disorders, and improving overall quality of life.[33][43][44]
This is the first review to have focused on exercise as an add-on strategy in the treatment of MDD. Our findings corroborate some previous observations that were based on few studies and which were difficult to generalize.41,51,73,92,93 Given the results of the present article, it seems that exercise might be an effective strategy to enhance the antidepressant effect of medication treatments. Moreover, we hypothesize that the main role of exercise on treatment-resistant depression is in inducing neurogenesis by increasing BDNF expression, as was demonstrated by several recent studies.
The St Thomas method, however, did not survive World War II, besides the mentioned indications of use in Australia a decade later, and Randell’s work has since been forgotten. Various factors might attribute to this, including the tragic loss in 1940 when two bombs hit St Thomas hospital killing four physiotherapists including Thomas;29 Sydney Morning Herald [Internet]. Thomas BM: Obituary (1940). 2014 Oct 23 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: [Google Scholar] and the promotion of rival London obstetric group, led by Grantly Dick-Read and Physiotherapist Helen Heardman, with the concept of natural childbirth. This movement gained favor with the healthcare establishments, chartered physiotherapists and the general public at the ultimate expense of the St Thomas Project.23 Raphael AJ. Natural childbirth in twentieth century England; PhD thesis. London: Queen Mary University of London; 2010. [Google Scholar] Randell left St Thomas physiotherapy school in 1945, just before the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy imposed a new syllabus.37 The National Archives [Internet]. Saint Thomas’ hospital: physiotherapy school. 2009 Aug 12 [cited 2015 Sep 23]. Available from: [Google Scholar] She received the royal title of OBE and extended her career interest with a focus on gynecological cases; in 1948, she co-founded the Obstetric Association of Chartered Physiotherapists, was awarded an honorary fellowship of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists and was later remembered as the pioneer of modern women’s health physiotherapy (Figures 1, 5–7).38 Pelvic Obstetric and Gynaecological Physiotherapy [Internet]. A brief history. 2015 Aug 30 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: [Google Scholar]

Environmental approaches appear promising: signs that encourage the use of stairs, as well as community campaigns, may increase exercise levels.[126] The city of Bogotá, Colombia, for example, blocks off 113 kilometers (70 mi) of roads on Sundays and holidays to make it easier for its citizens to get exercise. Such pedestrian zones are part of an effort to combat chronic diseases and to maintain a healthy BMI.[127][128]
If you don't have access to weights, then you can perform resistance exercises utilizing just the weight of your own body. These types of exercises include pull ups, push ups, crunches, squats, and lunges. If you'd like to find a well designed workout using body weight resistance, try the Slow Burn Fitness Revolution, which relies on slow movements to really increase intensity as you perform isotonic exercises.
How to: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, bend your knees, and bend forward at the hips. Engage your abs without hunching your back. Hold weights beneath your shoulders, keeping your hands shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and lift both hands toward the sides of your body. Pause, then slowly lower your hands to the starting position. Can perform with a bar or dumbbells.
I’ve recently been using an excellent iPhone app called 7-Minute Workout, which has totally changed my life. Its simple, voice-guided power workouts make it easy to exercise in my bedroom using only my body and some basic props, and the app’s game mechanics help make the experience fun rather than a chore. The best part is that, no matter how busy I am, I always have time for a seven-minute workout. I’m currently rocking a three-month daily workout streak and counting.
^ Jump up to: a b McKee AC, Daneshvar DH, Alvarez VE, Stein TD (January 2014). "The neuropathology of sport". Acta Neuropathol. 127 (1): 29–51. doi:10.1007/s00401-013-1230-6. PMC 4255282. PMID 24366527. The benefits of regular exercise, physical fitness and sports participation on cardiovascular and brain health are undeniable ... Exercise also enhances psychological health, reduces age-related loss of brain volume, improves cognition, reduces the risk of developing dementia, and impedes neurodegeneration.

In extreme instances, over-exercising induces serious performance loss. Unaccustomed overexertion of muscles leads to rhabdomyolysis (damage to muscle) most often seen in new army recruits.[88] Another danger is overtraining, in which the intensity or volume of training exceeds the body's capacity to recover between bouts. One result of detrimental overtraining is suppressed immune function, with an increased incidence of upper respiratory tract infection (URTI). An increased incidence of URTIs is also associated with high volume/intensity training, as well as with excessive exercise (EE), such as in a marathon.[89] Marathon training requires the runner to build their intensity week to week which makes them more susceptible to injury the more they increase their mileage. A study shows that in the last 10–15 years up to 90% of marathon runners have suffered a physical injury from their training.[90]

One of the easiest parts of starting an exercise program is deciding to do it. Usually there's something inspiring you to make a change: Maybe you tried on a pair of jeans that were too tight or there's an upcoming event—a reunion, wedding, or party—where you're going to see people you haven't seen in a while. Whatever it is, you're motivated, you're excited, and the fantasy of a new, slimmer you is enough to inspire you.

The aim of this study was to assess the effects of vigorous exercise on functional abilities by means of a Senior Fitness Test (SFT) in a group of elderly adults. Twenty healthy and inactive people performed vigorous exercise (VE: 12 men and 8 women, aged 69.6 ± 3.9 years). At the beginning of the study (T0) and after 3 months (T1), each subject's functional ability was tested for muscular strength, agility, cardiovascular fitness, flexibility, and balance. The VE was designed with continuous and interval exercise involving large muscle activities. Functional exercises were performed between 60% and 84% of heart rate reserve (HRR) for a duration of 65 minutes. Five out of the 6 SFTs performed were found significantly improved: Chair Stand (T0 12.4 ± 2.4, T1 13.5 ± 2.6, p < 0.01), Arm Curl (T0 14.2 ± 3.6, T1 16.6 ± 3.6, p < 0.01), 2 min step (T0 98.2 ± 15.7, T1 108.9 ± 16.2, p < 0.01), Chair Sit-and-Reach (T0 −9.9 ± 7.7 cm, T1 1.7 ± 6.3 cm, p < 0.01), and Back Scratch (T0 −15.8 ± 10.9 cm, T1 −8.4 ± 13.1 cm, p < 0.01). Our results suggest that a high intensity protocol and functional exercises can improve functional mobility and muscle endurance in those over 65 years of age. SFTs are an effective method for assessing improvements in the functional capacity of elderly adults.