Integrating Physical Activity into ASWB Exam Prep

Integrating Physical Activity into ASWB Exam Prep

It should be no surprise, but the ASWB (Association of Social Work Boards) exam isn’t a walk in the park! And if you’re like most of us, cramming in all that information can feel like a marathon without an end in sight.

But what if we told you there’s a way to make it feel less like an endless trek and more like…a dance? Yes, you heard that right! Integrating physical activity into your ASWB exam prep could be the game-changer you never knew you needed!

Learn more about the ASWB exam and create a personalized ASWB study plan with Agents of Change. We’ve helped thousands of Social Workers pass their ASWB exams and want to help you be next!

1) Why Integrate Physical Activity into ASWB Exam Prep?

Studying for hours on end might seem productive, but our brains need more than just mental stimulation. They thrive when we mix things up with a bit of physical activity.

Mental Benefits of Physical Activity

  • Increased Focus: Ever felt that foggy brain feeling after hours of studying? Physical activity gets the blood flowing and brings more oxygen to the brain and helps you stay alert!
  • Stress Reduction: The ASWB exam can be stressful! But working out? It releases endorphins, those feel-good hormones. Imagine studying with a clearer, happier mind.
  • Memory Boost: Moving your body can actually help improve memory retention. Who knew that a bit of movement could make those exam topics stick better?

Physical Benefits

  • Increased Energy: Feeling lethargic from all that sitting? A quick stretch or walk can revitalize you.
  • Improved Posture: Study slumps are real. Combat the hunch with some exercises aimed at improving your posture.
  • General Health: A healthy body often means a healthier mind. Keep your immune system strong, especially during those high-stress exam times.

2) How to Incorporate Physical Activity into Your Study Regime

Now that we’re all pumped about the idea of getting our blood flowing, let’s dive into how to actually integrate physical activity into our ASWB studying.

Mix and Move!

  • Study Walks: Instead of reading at your desk, why not take your notes for a walk? Stroll around your room, your backyard, or even the park.
  • Deskercise: You’ve got a chair and a desk? That’s all you need! Chair squats, seated leg lifts, or even simple torso twists can get the job done.
  • Dance Breaks: Put on your favorite jam and shake it out! Not only will you get the blood flowing, but it’s also a great mood booster.

Make it a Routine

  1. Start Small: Begin with a 5-minute stretch every hour. Gradually increase the time or intensity as you get comfortable.
  2. Incorporate Activity into Breaks: Use study breaks as a chance to move. Maybe a quick jog around the block?
  3. Set Alarms: Use your phone or study app to remind you to move. Our brains sometimes get so engrossed, we forget to take care of our bodies.

Team Up!

Find a study buddy who’s also preparing for the ASWB. Make it a fun challenge to integrate physical activities. Maybe compete on who can do the most sit-ups while reciting key concepts? Ok, maybe that’s too much!

3) Combating Common Study Challenges with Physical Activity

As we dive deeper, it’s impossible to ignore the hurdles that almost every student encounters in their studying journey. These challenges can range from bouts of anxiety to frequent distractions. Fortunately, physical activity also offers solutions to some of these common challenges.

Overcoming Mental Fatigue

We’ve all been there — that dreaded mental block when no matter how hard you try, the information just doesn’t stick. But wait, there’s a lifeline!

  • Quick Cardio Burst: Feeling mentally exhausted? Do a quick cardio session, even if it’s just for 5 minutes. Cardio can help pump oxygen-rich blood to the brain, revitalizing those tired neurons.
  • Meditative Movements: Tai Chi, Qigong, or even yoga can help reconnect with your breath and center your mind. The gentle, flowing movements are therapeutic and can offer that much-needed mental reset. Looking for more? Check out this post: How To Use Habit Stacking And Mindfulness To Support Your ASWB Studying

Staying Motivated

It’s easy to start strong and then lose motivation midway through your studying.

  • Reward System: Every time you complete a study milestone, do something physical you love. This could be dancing to your favorite song or taking a walk outside. This way, you’re not just looking forward to the study break, but the activity itself!
  • Visualize with Movement: Stand up and stretch your arms wide, imagining your success and how good it feels. Physical embodiment of your goals can make them feel more tangible and achievable.

Reducing Exam Anxiety

The ASWB exam can be a stressful experience, but physical activity can help keep your anxiety in check.

  • Deep Breathing Exercises: When you feel the tension building, pause and take deep breaths. Inhale positivity and confidence, exhale doubt and anxiety.
  • Grounding Techniques: Physical grounding exercises, like feeling your feet firmly planted on the ground or touching various textures around you, can help pull you back from spirals of anxiety.

Learn more in this post: 5 Strategies To Overcome Test Anxiety During ASWB Exam Preparation

Fighting Off Distractions

In the age of constant notifications and digital interruptions, maintaining focus can be tough.

  • Active Breaks: If you find your mind wandering, it might be time for an active break. Do some jumping jacks, push-ups, or even a quick jog. It can help clear the distracting thoughts and reset your concentration.
  • Hand and Finger Exercises: If you’re reading and find yourself distracted, try finger taps or hand stretches. It’s a subtle way to integrate physical activity without disrupting your study flow.

By utilizing physical activity to combat these common challenges, you not only enhance your physical well-being but also empower your study routine, turning potential setbacks into moments of growth and rejuvenation.

Learn more: Anatomy Of An ASWB Study Session: Structuring Your Time Effectively

4) FAQs – Exercise and the ASWB Exam

Q: I’ve read about the Pomodoro Technique, where you study intensely for 25 minutes and then take a 5-minute break. Can I incorporate physical activity into this method?

A: Definitely! The Pomodoro Technique is a popular approach to maintain focus and prevent burnout. During those 5-minute breaks, instead of just zoning out, you can engage in quick physical activities.

Think jumping jacks, a brisk walk around your room, or even simple stretching exercises. This will not only refresh you physically but mentally as well.

Q: I’ve heard about “brain gym” exercises that supposedly help with concentration and memory. Are these worth incorporating into my ASWB Exam Prep?

A: Absolutely! Brain gym exercises are designed to enhance brain functionality by utilizing physical movement. Examples include touching your opposite elbow and knee or doing cross-body stretches.

These movements stimulate both hemispheres of the brain, potentially aiding in memory retention and cognitive function. It’s a two-birds-one-stone situation: physical activity and potential cognitive benefits!

Q: I’m concerned about overexerting myself during study sessions. How can I find a balance between effective physical activity and ensuring I’m not too worn out to continue studying?

A: It’s essential to strike a balance. Listen to your body. If you’re feeling fatigued, opt for gentler movements like stretching or deep breathing exercises instead of high-intensity activities.

Remember, the goal here isn’t to engage in a full-blown workout but to incorporate movement that complements your study regimen. It’s about keeping your body active and your mind refreshed, not getting a six-pack (although that would be a bonus!).

5) Conclusion

Integrating physical activity into ASWB exam prep isn’t about burning calories or flexing those muscles; it’s about creating a harmonious blend of mental and physical stimulation to get you exam-ready.

So, next time you find yourself dozing off amidst those notes, stand up, stretch, and dance with the ASWB topics. Your brain (and body) will thank you!

Learn more about the ASWB exam and create a personalized ASWB study plan with Agents of Change. We’ve helped thousands of Social Workers pass their ASWB exams and want to help you be next!


► Learn more about the Agents of Change course here:

About the Instructor, Meagan Mitchell: Meagan is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and has been providing individualized and group test prep for the ASWB for over five years. From all of this experience helping others pass their exams, she created the Agents of Change course to help you prepare for and pass the ASWB exam!

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Disclaimer: This content has been made available for informational and educational purposes only. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or clinical advice, diagnosis, or treatment


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