Benefits of Activity and Exercise

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Being active helps you to stay healthy, happy and fit. There are many different ways you can get active and finding the activity that suits you is an important first step. You may enjoy walking, running, dancing, surfing, going to the gym, swimming, yoga, hiking, playing a team sport or a number of other activities. Whatever activity you choose, some of the benefits include improved strength, heart health, and flexibility; reduced pain, improved confidence, decreased stress levels, and the ability to maintain a healthy weight and sleep better at night.

When thinking about beginning to exercise, it may be beneficial to start gradually, make it social, make it part of your routine and most importantly, make it fun! To find out which type of exercise is best for you, the easiest way is to try. Keep trying until you find activities you enjoy, and don’t quit. There are lots of great options to exercise through teams sports, with friends or alone.

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Acknowledgement: This fact sheet was originally developed by youth and staff at, a website that helps teens get through tough times. 

Special Thanks: CAPT Donnie Lee, MD, Indian Health Service Portland Area Diabetes Consultant Acting Director Office of Clinical Support

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