Physical activity and young people

Canoeist paddles in the water

Getting fit and staying active can help you feel better. Fact!

It also strengthens your heart, improves your circulation and gives you more energy.

Physical activity can control your weight and reduce stress. Staying active releases hormones called endorphins, which make you feel happy. And research has even shown that fitter teenagers have a higher IQ!

So working physical activity into your day can make you fitter, stronger, happier and smarter – what’s not to love! But it’s not all about sweating it out in the gym, unless that’s your thing of course!

Find something you really love doing – whether it’s dancing, running, football, swimming, karate, dog walking or BMXing – physical activity should be fun!

Easy ways to get active

  • Walk on short journeys rather than getting a lift in the car
  • Get off the bus a stop early and walk the rest
  • Make the most of activity clubs offered at your school, college or uni
  • Encourage your family to do something active together at the weekend
  • Walk up escalators or take the stairs and avoid the lift
  • Get moving by helping out with household chores – and get in the good books
  • Do something active during TV ad breaks – or keep moving when you’re watching your favourite show – if it’s Strictly then dance yourself.

Here’s the lowdown

  • You should try and be physically active for an hour every day – so long as it raises your heart rate anything goes!
  • Aim to include 15-20 minutes of aerobic activity that works your whole body and your heart, leaving you feeling out of breath and a little bit sweaty!
  • Always start and end physical activity sessions with a few minutes of gentle activity to warm up and cool down.
  • Stretch out your muscles after your warm up and again after you finish your activity.

Do you want to meet other young people like you?

Are you aged between 13 and 19 with a heart condition and living in the UK? You can join [email protected] absolutely free!

[email protected] is a great way to get help and support and meet other young heart patients at great events.

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