Stress Awareness Month 2023 | Alleviate tension through exercise

As we enter Stress Awareness Month, it’s important to take time for wellbeing exercises that can alleviate tension that builds up throughout the day. We spoke with Benjamin Robinson, Physiotherapist here at Teladoc Heath UK, about how we can relieve stress at work.


We can all be exposed to stress in the workplace due to the demanding nature of our jobs and life in general. There are a number of ways to manage stress.

Exercise increases your overall health and your sense of wellbeing, which puts more pep in your step every day. But exercise also has some direct stress-busting benefits.

It pumps up your endorphins

Physical activity may help bump up the production of your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Although this function is often referred to as a runner’s high, any aerobic activity, such as a rousing game of tennis or a nature hike, can contribute to this same feeling.

It reduces negative effects of stress

Exercise can provide stress relief for your body while imitating effects of stress, such as the flight or fight response, and helping your body and its systems practice working together through those effects. This can also lead to positive effects in your body — including your cardiovascular, digestive and immune systems — by helping protect your body from harmful effects of stress.

It’s meditation in motion

After a fast-paced game of racquetball, a long walk or run, or several laps in the pool, you may often find that you’ve forgotten the day’s irritations and concentrated only on your body’s movements. As you begin to regularly shed your daily tensions through movement and physical activity, you may find that this focus on a single task, and the resulting energy and optimism, can help you stay calm, clear and focused in everything you do.

It improves your mood

Regular exercise can increase self-confidence, improve your mood, help you relax, and lower symptoms of mild depression and anxiety. Exercise can also improve your sleep, which is often disrupted by stress, depression and anxiety. All of these exercise benefits can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of command over your body and your life.

Exercises that are useful to help manage stress are:
  • Taking yourself for a walk at lunchtime for 15 minutes.
  • Going for a run
  • Doing some desk based exercises
  • Yoga stretches
  • Deep breathing exercises


The list is not exhaustive and the key to exercises at work is making them something you enjoy and also making them time efficient.

Desk based exercises such as these are good place to start to get your body moving. Alternatively there are very easy ways to move such as getting up at your desk and doing 3 sets of 20 squats.

Alternatively doing yoga poses for 5-10 minutes in a quiet space at the office or at home can help calm the brain and let your body move more freely.


Interested in adding physio sessions to your employee/member wellbeing policies? from Our virtual service offers quick, easy access to a highly qualified Physiotherapist via a video link without needing a GP referral. Click here for more.

Author: Ellie Murphy, Lead Psychologist, Teladoc Health UK


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