If you have an anxiety disorder or experience high levels of anxiety in general, you'll likely know that exercise has been touted as a great way to reduce anxiety symptoms. However, it can be tough to figure out what precise exercise regime might help the most — which means it can be helpful to know how workouts are meant to reduce anxiety. The good news is that there isn't one universal anxiety-busting workout that fits everybody; you have a lot of choices that might be able to help. Three particular kinds of exercise stand out as anxiety-soothing, but they're broad categories that can contain many different activities.
Around 40 million adults in the U.S. live with an anxiety disorder, according to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America, and relatively few of them — around a third — are seeking treatment for it. Exercise, whether at home, in a gym or out on a sports field, can be a good way to help manage anxiety symptoms, though it definitely can't "cure" anxiety. And if you're feeling overwhelmed, you can always reach out for professional help.
There's scientific basis behind the idea that certain kinds of exercise are helpful for anxiety, so if you want to change it up or start exercising for the first time, here are some things to try.