Part of our internship program involves each intern writing a weekly blog about whatever topic they’ve learned or discovered. This week, Emma Ulrich, interning with us this semester from Butler University, has tackled the blog:
Who can forget the climatic scene of Legally Blonde, when Elle Woods is able to clear the suspect by declaring that since she exercises, she is happy, and “happy people don’t kill people. They just don’t?” Turns out, Miss Woods was not actually that far off of the truth. Numerous studies have been conducted about the benefits of exercise on health and happiness. In fact, exercise increases the production of endorphins, which reduce the perception of pain and can increase levels of self-esteem and happiness.
A study done in Norway entitled “Stress and Happiness among Adolescents with Varying Frequency of Physical Activity” shows that using physical activity is also good for adolescents. When answering a survey, those who exercised 2-3 times a week self-reported as happier and less stressed than those who did not participate in physical activity! Another study, this one from the United States, called “Sports Participation and Happiness: Evidence from U.S. Micro Data” shows that people who live in areas with more sports facilities are more likely to exercise and are more likely to self-report higher life satisfaction. Both of these studies are great testaments to the power of exercise!
I feel as if these studies truly show why the mission of Nine13sports is so important. Some kids may not have access, outside of school, to areas where they can participate in sports or other physical activities; in fact, some adults might not either. Through programming at schools, we are able to show kids that there are other options to exercise that are easy and fun! By learning how fun bike riding and other forms of exercise can be, kids can begin lifelong habits that encourage both physical and mental health. And I think that is really awesome.