Here’s how hitting the trails hard for 20 minutes can benefit your brain.
If you’re hoping to sharpen your memory, doing the crossword everyday could be helpful. Moving around though in short bursts, could be even more beneficial.
A study done at McMaster University in Canada has shown that engaging in high intensity exercise can boost your memory.
Researchers had participants partake in 6 weeks of intense exercise for about 20 minutes. The activities done involved short bouts of interval training.
The participants were 96 healthy, young adults and it was found that those who participated in the physical training showed significant improvements in something called high-interference memory.
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This type of memory is specific and allows us to do things like distinguish our car from another one of the same make and model.
The findings indicate that just as your phys-ed teacher long suspected, being on the volleyball team does more for you than better your serve.
“Improvements in this type of memory from exercise might help to explain the previously established link between aerobic exercise and better academic performance,” says Jennifer Heisz, an assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology at McMaster and lead author of the study.
“At the other end of our lifespan, as we reach our senior years,” she added, “we might expect to see even greater benefits in individuals with memory impairment brought on by conditions such as dementia,” she says.
So, running marathon, although challenging, maybe isn’t necessary. For ideas on simple do-it-yourself interval training, click here.