Everyone knows that exercise is good for our bodies, but did you know it’s also great for your brain? There’s plenty of research indisputably showing that exercise can improve memory and critical thinking skills. We also know that brain training can be beneficial to keeping our minds sharp as we age.
But what happens if we do both? Well, it gets pretty exciting!
Most of us don’t really understand the complexity of the brain. For example, few people know that memories come in different types and are created and stored in the brain’s hippocampus. Past studies show that exercise prompts the creation of new brain cells in the hippocampus, providing the raw materials onto which new memories can be written.
Scientists at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario began to wonder if combining brain training with exercise would be complementary; with exercise prompting the creation of neurons that brain training would then strengthen.
The researchers studied healthy young college students—a group with presumably good memories. The scientists theorized that if the experimental program resulted in better memories in this group of people, it should also have implications for those with aging memories.
The college students, none of whom engaged in regular exercise, were given baseline readings and then were randomly sorted into three groups. One was the control group who made no changes. One group began exercising three times a week for 20 minutes of interval training. The final group combined the same exercise program with the addition of 20 minutes of brain training before or after their workout session. This experiment lasted for six weeks and then the preliminary testing was conducted again to measure the results.
The group who incorporated exercise into their weekly routine were more physically fit than the control group and there were improvements in their memory and recall. The memory enhancement was most pronounced among the volunteers whose fitness improved the most, especially if they also participated in the brain training, which led researchers to believe that more fitness led to stronger memories with the brain training boosting the effect.
So how can you maximize these findings for yourself? Braintapping, of course! There is a growing body of evidence for the supportive role visualization plays in the mind-body connection and BrainTap is a favorite with those who strive for peak performance in body and mind. Not only will you benefit from the relaxation that listening to a BrainTap audio session provides, but you will also build and strengthen neural pathways to keep your brain young and sharp.
Our library has several audio programs devoted to increasing your motivation to exercise and making exercise easy and fun, so you can combine these two mental powerhouses each and every day to get the maximum benefit from both!
To learn more or to access you free trial today, click here.