LONDON: Exercising not only trims the waistline but can bump up your pay packet too, scientists said.

Workers who go for a jog, swim or lift weights in the gym three times a week could increase their income by up to 9 per cent, a study has found. Even lighter forms of exercise such as regular walking can help boost salaries, the Daily Mail reported.

Bosses may regard employees who commit to regular activity as being more determined and dedicated personalities. Active and healthy staff members are also more likely to work harder because of the psychological and physical benefits of keeping fit.

The study looked at two questionnaires in the United States involving more than 12,000 people, which outlined details about salaries and the amount of exercise participants engaged in.

The results showed that people who exercised three times a week could expect a salary between 6 per cent and 9 per cent higher than those who do not, the Daily Mail reported. Those who exercised between one and three times a month enjoyed wages that were 5 per cent higher.

'In addition to the positive impact on heart health, weight and other medical issues, studies show that exercise leads to improved mental function, psychological condition and higher energy levels.

'All three of these traits can translate into higher earnings,' said the report's author, Dr Vasilios Kosteas from Cleveland State University in Ohio.