KEEPING ACTIVE DURING THE WINTER MONTHS
As the days get darker and the weather gets colder, you may be contemplating ways to remain physically active throughout the forthcoming winter months. Particularly with the added limitations of a second national lockdown, many feel that their opportunity for activity will be largely impaired during this time – but that does not have to be the case!
Keeping active during the winter months is crucial to retain positive mental health, especially as any low feelings may potentially be intensified with the addition of this latest lockdown. Although a variety of explanations exist regarding the fall in mental wellbeing during this period, the reduction in sunlight and increased time spent indoors provide the most plausible rationale. Spending less time in the sun can lead to a Vitamin D deficiency, with low levels being associated with both low mood and heightened anxiety and stress. Similarly, exposure to sunlight is thought to increase the release of serotonin from the brain – a hormone that plays a key role in mood regulation. A reduction in serotonin levels, resulting from the shorter and gloomier days, is often associated with an upsurge in negative mood. But there are plenty of ways to combat this, even during the winter months!
Whilst traditional structured exercise may be restricted due to the current
closure of leisure facilities and prohibition of team sports, it’s important to remember that your everyday physical activity is just as valuable for maintaining your mental and physical health. In fact, a whole variety of physical activity is available to you from the safety of your own home, and it’s likely that you’re already undertaking some of these activities without even realising! Everything from general household DIY tasks, to more everyday activities such as cooking, cleaning or vacuuming, and even simply looking after children or grandchildren all offer great sources of movement. Your activity does not have to be vigorous to have profound benefits, which is why we advocate taking a multi-dimensional approach and finding the true value in each and every movement you make.
Engaging in physical activity is one of the most advantageous things you can do for your brain health, as well bringing about a multitude of physical benefits too, and it’s crucial that we don’t neglect our activity as winter approaches. At KiActiv ® , we understand that physical activity is not limited to going to the gym or out for a run, but instead encompasses each and every movement you make. With the prospect of engaging in more traditional exercise during these colder and darker winter days being unappealing to many, we strive to help you find the true value in your everyday activities and keep those winter blues away!
The KiActiv® Team