Can Exercise & Physical Activity Induce Improvements for Mental Disorders?

Research Paper Title

Exercise and physical activity in mental disorders: clinical and experimental evidence.


Several epidemiological studies have shown that exercise (EX) and physical activity (PA) can prevent or delay the onset of different mental disorders, and have therapeutic benefits when used as sole or adjunct treatment in mental disorders.

This review summarises studies that used EX interventions in patients with anxiety, affective, eating, and substance use disorders, as well as schizophrenia and dementia/mild cognitive impairment.

Despite several decades of clinical evidence with EX interventions, controlled studies are sparse in most disorder groups.

Preliminary evidence suggests that PA/EX can induce improvements in physical, subjective and disorder-specific clinical outcomes.

Potential mechanisms of action are discussed, as well as implications for psychiatric research and practice.


Zschucke, E., Gaudlitz, K. & Strohle, A. (2020) Exercise and physical activity in mental disorders: clinical and experimental evidence. Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health. 46 Suppl 1(Suppl 1), pp.S12-21. doi: 10.3961/jpmph.2013.46.S.S12. Epub 2013 Jan 30.

Book: Essential Art Therapy Exercises

Book Title:

Essential Art Therapy Exercises: Effective Techniques to Manage Anxiety, Depression, and PTSD.

Author(s): Leah Guzman.

Year: 2020.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Rockridge Press.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.


Process difficult thoughts and feelings with art therapy

Essential Art Therapy Exercises shows you how creating art can help ease depression, anxiety, PTSD, and life’s other challenges. Art therapy activities like drawing, painting, and sculpting will help you better understand your state of mind in order to gain control over your emotions and improve your self-esteem.

From drawing a representation of your favourite song, to writing affirmations and taking photos to match, these therapeutic exercises will help you overcome the mindsets that are holding you back and lead you toward inner peace. Some take only five minutes, others up to an hour, but all of them explore a range of artistic mediums, so you can choose exactly what works for you.

Essential Art Therapy Exercises offers:

  • The art of getting better – These sophisticated exercises are a springboard for insight, self-expression, mindfulness, acceptance, and self-compassion.
  • Insights and questions – Every activity describes its benefits and offers thoughtful prompts to help you get the most out of each experience.
  • No experience required – You do not need to be an artist to use art therapy. It is about the experience of creating-without worry or judgement.