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Exercise as a Treatment for Depression 

Exercise as a Treatment for Depression
Exercise as a Treatment for Depression

Chad D. Rethorst

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date: 21 May 2022

Beginning with epidemiological evidence and moving to randomized controlled trials, researchers have established evidence supporting the effectiveness of exercise in the treatment of depression. This chapter will provide an overview of the benefits of exercise for patients with depression, discuss the challenges clinicians face in using exercise as a treatment in clinical practice, and provide practical advice on exercise prescription. The chapter concludes with a discussion of areas of need for future research, focusing on three areas: identifying strategies to ensure patient adherence with exercise prescriptions, identifying predictors of treatment response that will facilitate a personalized medicine approach to exercise prescription, and the use of exercise as a complementary agent with other depression treatments.

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