About Us Latest News The Impact of Sport on Mental Health Children growing up in poverty are three times more likely to suffer mental health issues. However, did you know that sport can be used as a tool to overcome these issues? SportInspired’s mission is to give every child the opportunity to enjoy their childhood, develop their self-belief, and achieve their dreams. But, how do sport and physical activity have any impact on mental health? For starters, it has been proven that physical activity, especially activity performed outdoors, can improve cognitive performance and symptoms related to attention deficit disorder. Exercise immediately boosts serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine levels in the brain, which all affect our attention span. This is why exercise has some of the same effects as ADHD medications. It has also been proven that physical activity has the ability to reduce anxiety and depression in children while increasing self-esteem. A recent study performed by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that the risk of depression can be reduced by 26% by simply walking for an hour or running for 15 minutes a day. Researchers have even found that people felt more awake and calmer after participating in physical activity. This is why exercise is known to relieve stress, help you sleep better, and even improve memory. Overall, regular exercise has the power to decrease the chance of mental health problems such as ADHD, depression, and anxiety, improve mood, and allow for a better and more balanced lifestyle.