Spring Special: SAVE $40 on IDEA Personal Trainer Institute West. Use code PTIWMARCH at checkout.   SAVE $40 Now! »

Exercise Improves Stress Hormone Response in Kids

by Ryan Halvorson on Jul 01, 2013

Making News

The life of a child can be stressful as he navigates school, peer relationships and other childhood circumstances. A new study has found that being physically active may help children manage stress more efficiently.

Published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (2013; 98 [4], E619–27), the study included 258 8-year-old children from Helsinki. The children were given wrist-worn accelerometers to track physical activity levels. Salivary cortisol was measured to determine hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical axis (HPAA) activity daily and after exposure to stress in the form of tasks involving mathematics and story-telling.

Researchers noted no real differences in daily salivary cortisol among children with different activity levels. However, differences did emerge when the children were exposed to stressors.

“Children with the highest levels of overall physical activity showed no, or only small, increases over time in salivary cortisol after stress, whereas children belonging to the lowest and intermediate thirds showed significant increases over time in salivary cortisol after stress,” the authors explained. “These findings may offer insight into the pathways of physical activity on physical and mental well-being.”

IDEA Fitness Journal, Volume 10, Issue 7

Find the Perfect Job

More jobs, more applicants and more visits than any other fitness industry job board.

© 2013 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

About the Author

Ryan Halvorson

Ryan Halvorson IDEA Author/Presenter

Ryan Halvorson is the chief content officer for Fit Scribe Media (www.fitscribemedia.com); contributing editor for IDEA Health & Fitness Association; director of group training at Bird Rock Fit in La Jolla, CA; a Master Instructor for Metabolic Effect and the creator of www.Fat2Fitin30.com, a lifestyle organization dedicated to finding ways to achieve improved fitness, nutrition and healthy living habits in 30 minutes or less. He is an internationally recognized speaker and has written for publications such as DETAILS and GQ.