Exercise, as a subset of physical activity is one of the best activities that man can engage in to improve and promote man’s overall health. Over the years, regular exercise has been described as a powerful tool that humans do to keep them in shape no matter their ages or fitness level. According to an article published on helpguide.org, it is said that people who exercise regularly tend to do so because it gives them enormous sense of well-being, which makes them feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better at night, have sharper memories, and feel more relaxed and positive about themselves.
Exercise has been defined by the Cambridge Dictionary as “A physical activity that you do to make your body strong and healthy”. The Medical Dictionary also defines exercise as a physical activity that is planned, structured and repetitive for the purpose of conditioning any part of the body. It is used to improve health, maintain fitness and is important as a means of physical rehabilitation. In view of this, it is necessary to note that exercise is an essential routine, which has both short term and long term benefits. Harvard Health Publication of the Harvard Medical School states that, “In the short term, exercise helps to control appetite, boost mood and improve sleep, and in the long run, reduces the risk of heart diseases, stroke, Type 2 diabetes, dementia, depression and different forms of cancers”.
However, some clinical studies have shown that regular exercise has numerous benefits, which include preventing weight gain and maintaining healthy weight, reducing blood pressure and cholesterol level, improving coordination, improving self-esteem and self-confidence, decreasing the risk of developing diabetes, curtailing cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer, and increasing life expectancy. In maintaining physical fitness, exercise consists of cardiovascular conditioning, strength, resistance training and flexibility to improve and maintain the fitness of the human heart, lungs and muscles. Cardiac rehabilitation form of exercise helps to improve the cardiovascular system for the prevention and rehabilitation of cardiac disorders and diseases.
Cardio exercises include jumping rope (skipping), bicycle riding, running or jogging, dancing, swimming, soccer and basketball. Also, cardio training, which is mostly referred to as aerobic exercise, helps to increase the breathing rate and oxygen intake by increasing the circulation of oxygen to the muscles. The National Institute of Aging (NIA), United States’ Department of Health and Human Resources, states that most people tend to focus on one type of exercise or activity and think they are doing enough, saying that research has shown that each exercise has different benefits and that doing one kind can also improve the ability to do the others while engaging in variety exercise helps to reduce boredom and the risk of getting injured.