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LEARNING: Research and Articles

“New study finds exercise improves children’s brain power” (2017)

The New Zealand study found that short bursts of high intensive training (HIT) boosts children's brain power and has benefits for children with learning difficulties or conditions such as autism.

“In Education:  The Importance of Physical Activity” (2017)

Researchers at Dartmouth College found that 12 minutes of aerobic exercise increased attention scores among that school’s students, especially for those of poverty.

"Short Bursts Of Exercise Can Give Your Brain An Edge, Study Suggests" (2018)

The results support the argument that schools should find ways to integrate light exercise with learning, instead of expecting the best results from students who spend most of their day sitting stagnant in classrooms.

"How Exercise Can Boost Young Brains" (2014) 

Hillman study links exercise to cognition in an after-school program of targeted play for 8-9 year olds, an age where the brain typically experiences a leap in executive functioning.

"Physical Activity May Help Kids Do Better in School, Studies Say” (2016)

Summary of studies demonstrating that children who are more active show greater attention, have faster cognitive processing speed, and perform better on standardized academic tests than children who are less active. Obesity was also reduced. /2013/10/21/e7f86306-2b87-11e3-97a3-ff2758228523_story.html

"Children Who Exercise Have More Brain Power, Finds Study" (2018)

University of Granada study found that children who are physically fit have a greater volume of grey matter in the brain’s frontal and temporal regions and the calcarine cortex, all of which are important for executive function (the mental skills that help us get things done), as well as learning, motor skills and visual processing.

“How to Improve Your Memory in Less than 15 Minutes” (2018)

Exercise before learning improves memory.A short period of exercise prior to learning improves both short and long-term memory.  Next time you need to study for a test, learn new information, first spend 15 minutes doing moderate-intensity physical activity.

"More Physical Activity Improved School Performance in Swedish Study" (2014)

Study of ~2,000 twelve-year olds shows that just two hours of extra physical activity each week can improve school performance.

"A Protein that Moves from Muscle to Brain May Tie Exercise to Memory" (2016)

When muscles work, they release a protein that appears to generate new cells and connections in a part of the brain that is critical to memory, reports Henriette van Praag's team in the journal Cell Metabolism

"Scientist Identify Protein Linking Exercise to Brain Health" (2013)

FNDC5 is the molecular link between exercise and increased BDNF in the brain.

“How Exercise Reprograms the Brain” (2018) 

As researchers unravel the molecular machinery that links exercise and cognition, working out is emerging as a promising neurotherapy.

“Boys Who Sit Still Have a Harder Time Learning to Read” (2016)

Researchers at the University of Eastern Finland analyzed studies that measured physical activity and sedentary time of 153 kids aged six to eight. Boys whose days were more sedentary when they were in first grade (a crucial year for learning to read) made fewer gains in reading in second and third grade. They also did worse at math for that year.

"New Study Indicates Students' Cognitive Functioning Improves When Using Standing Desks" (2016)

Texas A&M study indicates that continued use of standing desks is associated with significant improvements in executive function and working memory capabilities.

"Exercise and the Brain: It Will Make You Want to Work Out" (2010)

Len Kravitz, exercise science (UNM). Summary of research on effects of exercise on cogition.

"A Fit Body Means a Fit Mind" (2009)

Summary of research (Ratey, Hillman, etc.) and strategies (PE4Life) showing benefits of exercise for education.

"The Influence of Childhood Aerobic Fitness on Learning and Memory" (Hillman) (2013)

Fitness can boost learning and memory of children and that these fitness-associated performance benefits are largest in conditions in which initial learning is the most challenging.

"Texas Youth Fitness Study"

Cooper Institute study of millions of students showed correlation of fitness with increased scores on state achievment tests, lower discipline issues and increased attendance.

"Incorporating Physical Activity in Curriculum Can Boost Academic Performance" (2013)

U. of Kansas study showing increased PA in school increases achievement.

"Evidence that Aerobic Fitness Is More Salient than Weight Status in Predicting Standardized Math and Reading Outcomes in Fourth- Through Eighth-Grade Students" (Neb. study) (2013)

Aerobic fitness was a significant predictor of academic performance; weight status was not.

"Cure Winter Doldrums with In-Class Exercise: Get Up and Move! A Little Exercise May Boost Learning" (2010?)

"Exercise Helps Overweight Children Think Better, Do Better in Math" (2011)

Catherine Davis at Georgia Health Science University study linking exercise and achievement and cognition (IQ).

"Cardiovascular Fitness Is Associated with Cognition in Young Adulthood"

A longitudinal study in Sweden shows that the improved fitness between the ages of 15-18 correlates with higher achievement and socioeconomic status in life.

"The Association Between School-Based Physical Activity, Including Physical Education, and Academic Performance" (2010)

CDC meta-analysis shows time spent on physical activity and PE does not negatively impact academic achievement, and the majority of studies demonstrate an improvement.

"Why Does Aerobic Activity Improve Cognitive Function?" (2014)

Dartmouth study shows exercise to be particularly effective in improving cognition of low income kids due to neutralizing environmental stress.

"Neurocognative Kinesiology Laboratory"

Chuck Hillman links to TED talks, videos, research.

“High levels of physical activity are associated with better reading and arithmetic skills in the first three school years among boys” (2014)

A University of Eastern Finland study investigated the relationships of different types of physical activity and sedentary behavior assessed in the first grade to reading and arithmetic skills in grades 1–3 among 186 Finnish children. Higher levels of physical activity at recess were related to better reading skills and participation in organized sports was linked to higher arithmetic test scores in grades 1–3, particularly in boys.,c9642678

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