Exercise for Mood and Anxiety

Proven Strategies for Overcoming Depression and Enhancing Well-Being

by Michael Ph.D. Otto, Jasper A.J. Ph.D. Smits

Exercise has long been touted anecdotally as an effective tool for mood improvement, but only recently has rigorous science caught up with these claims. There is now overwhelming evidence that regular exercise can help relieve low mood-from feelings of stress and anxiety to full depressive episodes.With Exercise for Mood and Anxiety, Michael Otto and Jasper Smits, well-known authorities on cognitive behavioral therapy, take their empirically-based mood regulation strategy from the clinic to the general public. Written for those with diagnosed mood disorders as well as those who simply need a new strategy for managing the low mood and stress that is an everyday part of life, this book provides readers with step-by-step guidance on how to start and maintain an exercise program geared towards improving mood, with a particular emphasis on understanding the relationship between mood and motivation. Readers learn to attend carefully to mood states prior to and following physical activity in order to leverage the full benefits of exercise, and that the trick to maintaining an exercise program is not in applying more effort, but in arranging one's environment so that less effort is needed. As a result readers not only acquire effective strategies for adopting a successful program, but are introduced to a broader philosophy for enhancing overall well-being. Providing patient vignettes, rich examples, and extensive step-by-step guidance on overcoming the obstacles that prevent adoption of regular exercise for mood, Exercise for Mood and Anxiety is a unique translation of scientific principles of clinical and social psychology into an action-based strategy for mood change.

  • Oxford University Press; July 2011
  • ISBN: 9780199830503
  • Edition: 1
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure ePub format
  • Title: Exercise for Mood and Anxiety
  • Author: Michael Ph.D. Otto; Jasper A.J. Ph.D. Smits
  • Imprint: Oxford University Press

In The Press

"There is no better example of the potential for self-repair and resilience than the power of exercise and no better guide to those in need than this volume by Drs. Otto and Smits. This book should be part of the therapeutic 'prescription' for all who suffer mood, anxiety, and related disorders." - Jerrod F. Rosenbaum, MD, Harvard Medical School
"This is a very useful book for individuals who want to improve their mood through exercise. The authors provide an elegant blueprint to help readers motivate themselves, overcome the obstacles to carrying out the program, and above all, maintain the routine over time." - Aaron T. Beck, MD, University of Pennsylvania
"...the book represents good value for money, particularly for signposting patients towards reading material when they are struggling with stress in the workplace. It would also be useful for the clinician working with patients with depression or anxiety, as well as those with physical health concerns and for those who simply may benefit from improving their lifestyle using exercise." --Occupational Medicine

About The Author

Michael W. Otto, PhD is Professor of Psychology at Boston University. He has done extensive research on strategies to improve treatments for anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders.Jasper A. J. Smits, PhD is Associate Professor of Psychology at Southern Methodist University. He has done research on both anxiety disorders and health habits such as smoking, including a current large-scale study on the use of exercise for smoking cessation.