Keeping Fit

Date published: November 07, 2018

Managing exam stress and anxiety levels with exercise

“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” Buddha.

One of the prevalent feelings for many around exams is anxiety. That feeling of unease and apprehension can leave you worried or fearful about the exam process and your results. All of these feelings are perfectly normal during the exam period.

Did you know that exercise can help you to manage these feelings?

  1. Exercise is a proven method to help facilitate a person’s ability to perform, succeed and accomplish goals, which of course, is exactly what you want to do in an exam!
  2. Studies around Social Cognitive Theory have indicated a strong relationship between exercise and managing anxiety levels. Undertaking regular levels of physical activity can positively impact on our coping mechanisms and helps us to regulate our emotions.
  3. While exercise cannot solve all the complex issues and causes of anxiety, it is a proven mechanism for increasing levels of self-belief within challenging situations, positively impacting our self-confidence and resilience levels.
  4. Engaging in physical activity on a consistent basis creates a release of endorphins in the body, which provides the platform for increased levels of self-confidence. This endorphin release also improves mood and feelings of self-worth and accomplishment.

This graphic might be taken from a BBC page about improving children’s intelligence, but it’s never too late to start you know! 

Just look at the brain benefits of exercise…

Do you currently exercise?

Is your current level of exercise maintainable?

Here are a few pointers from the Sports Centre on how we can help to manage stress and anxiety levels as we head into this busy exam period.

  1. Exercise consistency and sustainability are of vital importance, and two of the most fundamental elements of ensuring that you can remain physically active. Regular exercise should play a fundamental role within your everyday life .
  2. Ensure to remain active throughout the exam period. The endorphins released through short bouts of exercise may provide that added benefit for you.
  3. Breaking away from your studies just to go for a brisk walk could be the perfect tonic for success!
  4. Ensure that you are adequately hydrated, and that you are getting the required amounts of protein to help you recover from your workouts.

Need help?

Our fitness instructors are always around to help you develop a personalised, long-term plan.

And finally…

Always try to make a conscious effort to remain active and dedicate time to prioritise your own health. As you head into the exam period and beyond, physical activity will play a fundamental role in helping you achieve your learning goals.

Keep these helpful tips in mind, and have the Live Well for Learning section of Skills for Learningbookmarked as your place to go for info about living well at the University of Salford!

‘This article was originally published on the Library’s Skills for Learning blog. Their Live Well for Learning page can be found here.’

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