Exercise is a top nonpharmaceutical ADHD treatment, as it can promote dopamine release, improve executive function, and alter BDNF (Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor ) signaling.
Here are some exercise recommendations for women with ADHD:
Aerobic exercises: Aerobic exercises such as running, cycling, or swimming can improve focus and reduce symptoms of ADHD.
Yoga: Yoga can help improve attention, balance and mindfulness, which can be beneficial for individuals with ADHD.
High-intensity interval training (HIIT): HIIT workouts are short, intense bursts of exercise that can help improve focus and reduce symptoms of ADHD.
Mindfulness practices: Mindfulness practices such as meditation, deep breathing, and tai chi can help improve attention and reduce symptoms of ADHD.
Outdoor activities: Engaging in outdoor activities such as hiking, rock climbing, or kayaking can help improve focus and reduce symptoms of ADHD.
Participating in a variety of activities will prevent you from getting mentally burned out, which is especially important for maintaining focus if you have ADHD.
Lastly, considering that adults typically have a much more regimented schedule than kids, it’s usually most time-efficient to portion off a part of your day for exercise to promote consistency.
It's important to find an exercise routine that is enjoyable and sustainable to maximize the benefits and make it a part of a daily routine. Consulting with a doctor or a mental health professional is recommended before starting any new exercise regimen.
Here are some ways to increase physical activity without formal exercise:
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator
- Walk or bike to work or run errands instead of driving
- Stand up and stretch regularly throughout the day
- Take a walk during lunch breaks or after dinner
- Participate in physical household chores like cleaning, gardening, or home repairs
- Play active games with children or pets
- Take up a physical hobby such as dancing, hiking, or rock climbing
- Attend group fitness classes, like a dance class or group sports games
- Volunteer for outdoor community events or work projects that involve physical activity.
- My favourite - put headphones on a dance round your house to happy songs!