Physical Activity vs. Exercise


You may ask yourself what the difference is between the two. Physical activity is any form of bodily movement or activity carried out by the muscles that require energy. In other words, it is any movement a person makes. Examples are walking around the grocery store, gardening, doing house chores, and playing with the grandkids.


Exercise is a subcategory of physical activity. It is the planned, structured, repetitive, and intentional movement focused on improving or maintaining one’s physical fitness. Examples include brisk walking, climbing hills/stairs, lifting weights, cycling, playing sports, and balancing exercises.


Some may argue that physical activity is equivalent to exercise/ aerobic exercise. However, one may not reach the levels or intensity of cardiovascular demands that trigger mechanisms beneficial to underlying brain and body health.


Physical activity contributes to overall health and well-being, whereas exercise improves physical fitness. Both are fundamental aspects of fitness in maintaining daily functions such as strength, coordination, balance, memory, dual tasking, flexibility, processing speed, and cardiovascular health.


By combining the two, you will see the most significant impact on your health. You may have many questions on how to introduce different types of exercise appropriate for your skill level and needs. We have created a 5, 10, 15, and 20 functional fitness challenge for January. There will be one routine a week for a total of 4 ways. These routines will focus on seven functional movements and will include three exercises. Each performance will take about 20 minutes.


For more information on this challenge or other great ways to add more physical activity and exercise into your life, please stop into one of our  fitness centers and speak with a certified personal trainer.




Ky'sha Johnson