Life is stressful! From shuffling the kids around, to caring for the home and all the little (and big) people who depend on you, the stress seems constant some days. Since stress can sometimes seem like its synonymous with mom, it’s best to find ways to release it.

Don’t worry, we’re here to help! Exercise helps relieve stress by bumping up your endorphins, improving your sleep, lowering your anxiety, and improving your overall mood. After a kick-butt Zumba class or a brisk walk, you may find that you’ve forgotten all about the day’s troubles.

That’s why we created a list of stress-relieving exercises and techniques so you can find your inner zen, even amidst all the crazy.

1. Yoga
Breathe in and breathe out all the tension, worry, and angst from the day. Yoga is an excellent stress reliever because it requires complete concentration. Yoga is a mind-body exercise, getting you to focus your body and breath with different poses and postures. It brings together physical and mental disciplines and can help you achieve peacefulness in your mind and body.

2. Kickboxing
Feeling frustrated? Kick your way to less stress. Kickboxing combines jabs, punches, and kicks through a series of controlled movements for a total-body workout and a powerful stress reliever. So take out all your aggression on the punching bag, instead of that driver who cut you off. After all, your kids are in the backseat watching you.

3. Team Sports
One of the best ways to get a double dose of stress relief is by exercising with friends. You’ll release endorphins as you work up a sweat and have fun. Team sports give you an outlet for stress relief and social time. So grab some pals and hit the tennis court, soccer field, or basketball courts.

4. Outdoor activities
Getting some fresh air while you sweat offers many benefits including an automatic mood boost. Feel your stress melt away as you go for a long walk, bike ride, cross country ski, or do a workout in the park. Plus the change in scenery and fresh air will clear your mind, making you a pillar of peace.

yoga exercises5. Stretch
Some days, it might not be realistic to hit the slopes or even the gym to get out the day’s stress. Even a five-minute stretch during those times can help relieve tension and relax your mind and body. Hold various stretches including child’s pose, shoulder shrug, torso stretch, and seated hip stretch for 15 to 30 seconds while you breathe deeply. Focus on your body and how the stretches feel.

Exercising, breathing deeply, and stretching regularly not only help reduce your stress in those moments, they can also help with future stressors. Commit to doing them regularly and next time your husband texts you that he’s running late or you find your child coloring on the walls, your mind and body will already be armed with your stress fighters.

Sara M

Sara M

Sara M. is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and freelance writer living and working near Boston, MA. As a former CrossFit gym owner and current fitness lover, Sara has a lot of personal and professional experience inside and outside the gym. She loves to write about various topics related to health, wellness, nutrition, human behavior, and self-mastery.

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