Anxiety and depressive disorders represent a major public health issue; over a third of the world will be affected by these disorders at one time or another in their life. This illustrates the importance of improving mental health in its positive dimension and prevents the onset of mental disorders. Physical activity is attracting more and more attention in the field of mental health. Increasingly epidemiological studies support the practice of physical activity would have a positive impact on mental health and the reduction of anxiety and depressive disorders.
This document was presented in the TOPO collection aims firstly to place mental health in its positive dimension. The characteristics of physical activity conducive to mental health, such as intrinsic motivation, a favourable environment for fun and social, are then discussed. Finally, various mechanisms of action are suggested to explain the association between physical activity and mental health. This exercise helped to make recommendations for physical activity optimize benefits on mental health and reducing mental disorders.