Is Gardening Good Exercise?

About The Author: Today's blog is by Ger from Workout For Less - a sports and fitness retailer based in the UK. Established over a decade ago, the Workout For Less team has years of fitness experience with their aim being to make fitness accessible to all, regardless of age, weight, ability or any other factors. Workout For Less regularly offers tips and guidance on all things fitness, whether that be in the gym, at home or in the garden!

Gardening, an enjoyable and rewarding activity, offers numerous opportunities for physical movement and engagement with nature. Understanding the positive impact of gardening on overall health and well-being can inspire individuals to incorporate it into their regular exercise routines.

Physical Activity

Gardening involves a range of physical movements that contribute to overall fitness. These include digging, planting, weeding, watering, pruning, and lifting. These activities engage various muscle groups, promoting strength, endurance, and flexibility.

Cardiovascular Health

Gardening can contribute to cardiovascular fitness. Activities such as raking, hoeing, or pushing a wheelbarrow require moderate levels of exertion, elevating heart rate and promoting circulation. Regular gardening can help improve cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Strength & Endurance

Tasks involved in gardening, such as lifting bags of soil, carrying pots, or using gardening tools, require muscular strength and endurance. These activities engage the upper body, lower body, and core muscles, leading to improved strength, stamina, and overall physical resilience.

Flexibility & Range Of Motion

Gardening involves a variety of movements, including bending, reaching, stretching, and twisting. These actions promote flexibility and help maintain or improve joint mobility and range of motion. Regular gardening can contribute to enhanced flexibility, reducing the risk of injuries and improving overall movement quality.

Balance & Coordination

Gardening tasks that require balance, such as walking on uneven terrain or manoeuvring around plants and obstacles, can improve balance and coordination. These skills are essential for fall prevention and maintaining stability as we age.

Stress Reduction & Mental Well-being

Engaging in gardening offers mental health benefits, providing a sense of relaxation, tranquility, and connection with nature. Gardening has been shown to reduce stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression. The exposure to sunlight and fresh air, coupled with the satisfaction of nurturing plants, can positively impact mental well-being.

Cognitive Stimulation

Gardening stimulates cognitive function by engaging problem-solving skills and memory. Planning the layout of a garden, remembering plant names, and identifying pests or diseases require mental focus and critical thinking. Regular gardening can help keep the mind sharp and improve cognitive abilities.

Connecting With Nature

Gardening provides an opportunity to connect with the natural world, fostering a sense of appreciation and environmental awareness. Spending time outdoors, observing plant growth, and nurturing living organisms can promote a deeper connection with nature, contributing to a sense of purpose and well-being.


Gardening offers numerous physical and mental health benefits, making it a valuable form of exercise. The physical activities involved in gardening promote cardiovascular fitness, strength, endurance, flexibility, balance, and coordination. Engaging in gardening can reduce stress, improve mental well-being, stimulate cognitive function, and foster a connection with nature. Incorporating gardening into daily routines can provide a fulfilling and rewarding way to stay physically active, enhance overall fitness, and promote a healthier lifestyle.


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