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  • Writer's pictureBenjamin Hoang

3 Ways Exercise Helps With ADHD

As a coach that has struggled with ADHD for the past 27 years and only recently started to deal with it, I recognize how much ADHD can cause chaos in our lives. As I learn more about ADHD, I saw that exercise can help us greatly with our mood, sleep, and actions. I wrote this to help others with ADHD manage the chaos in the lives. Here are 3 ways exercise helps with ADHD.

1. Exercise and Emotional Regulation in ADHD: 

Studies indicate that regular physical activity significantly moderates emotional responses in individuals with ADHD. By reducing stress hormones and lowering blood pressure, exercise helps in managing heightened emotions, particularly anger, which is often observed in ADHD cases.

2. Addressing ADHD-Induced Sleep Disorders Through Exercise: 

Research reveals a strong link between exercise and improved sleep patterns in ADHD patients. Physical activity aids in regulating circadian rhythms, leading to enhanced sleep quality, which is particularly beneficial for those with hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptoms.

3. Neurochemical Benefits of Exercise for ADHD: 

Exercise acts as a natural stimulant for the production of neurotransmitters like dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. These chemicals play a critical role in attention and behavior regulation, offering similar benefits to ADHD medication, thus serving as an effective complementary treatment.

Overcoming ADHD-Related Exercise Barriers: 

Scientific literature acknowledges the challenges faced by individuals with ADHD in maintaining regular exercise routines, such as poor time management and sensory sensitivities. Tailoring exercise plans to accommodate these challenges is crucial for sustained participation.

Optimizing Exercise Regimens for ADHD:

Evidence suggests that a mix of aerobic and mindfulness-based activities, tailored to individual preferences, can be most beneficial. Structured exercise routines, performed four to five times a week, have shown promising results in managing ADHD symptoms.

Incorporating exercise into the management plan for ADHD is substantiated by a growing body of research. It's more than physical health; it's about harnessing exercise as a science-based tool to improve mental health and daily functioning in individuals with ADHD.

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