Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Exercise tones women’s minds as well as their bodies

Exercise tones women’s minds as well as their bodies
January 28, 2015

Young women who regularly exercise may have more oxygen circulating in their brains and, as a result may have sharper minds, according to a study by the University of Otago.

While the findings, from a study of 52 healthy young women, don't prove that exercise makes women smarter, lead researcher Dr Liana Machado believes it is "reasonable" to conclude that exercise likely boosts mental prowess even when people are young and healthy.

Previous studies have found that older adults who exercise tend to have better blood flow in the brain, and do better on tests of memory and other mental skills, versus sedentary people of the same age, the authors point out.

With fewer studies having focused on young adults, this study targeted women between 18 and 30.

Writing in the journal Psychophysiology, the researchers highlight that the "predominant view" has been that young adults' brains are operating at their lifetime peak, no matter what their exercise level. But in this study, brain imaging showed that the oxygen supply in young women's brains did vary depending on their exercise habits.

The study found that compared with their less-active peers, women who exercised most days of the week had more oxygen circulating in the frontal lobe during a battery of mental tasks.

The frontal lobe governs some vital functions, including the ability to plan, make decisions and retain memories longer-term.

Machado's team found that active women did particularly well on tasks that measured "cognitive inhibitory control."

Machado explained “that refers to the ability to suppress reflexive responses and instead respond strategically, using self-control.”

That skill turns up a lot in daily life, she noted, whether in playing a video game or driving a car.

Similarly, the researchers found a link between higher brain oxygen levels and women's performance on the toughest test in the battery - where the challenge was to combine inhibitory control with multitasking.

While none of that proves cause-and-effect, Machado added "it seems reasonable to deduce that a causal relationship likely exists - where regular physical activity increases oxygen availability in the brain, which in turn supports better cognitive performance, particularly for more challenging tasks."

Women in this study were considered to be meeting guidelines on regular exercise if they got at least 30 minutes of moderate activity (such as brisk walking) or 15 minutes of vigorous

Click here to view the study 'Near-infrared spectroscopy reveals link between chronic physical activity and anterior frontal oxygenated hemoglobin in healthy young women' in the journal Psychophysiology.

Lower image courtesy of Life Fitness.

13th January 2015 - LORNA JANE LAUNCHES WOMEN’S FITNESS CHALLENGE

1st June 2014 - INACTIVITY IN WOMEN OVER 30 A GREATER HEALTH RISK THAN SMOKING

5th September 2013 - RESEARCH SHOWS MELBOURNE WOMEN MISSING OUT ON EXERCISE


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

TJS Services

TJS Services is a leading national facility services provider. We deliver quality cleaning, maintenance, construction and facility management services to over 1,500 sites Australia wide.  Our…

read more

Hospitality / Retail / Venues

 
 

Supreme Heating

Supreme Heating is a proud Australian owned company specialising in the latest energy efficient heating solutions. Since 1990, Supreme Heating has designed and installed commercial pool heating…

read more

Aquatics / Environment / Recreation

 
 

Life Fitness

Life Fitness Cardio Life Fitness Strength Hammer Strength Group Cycling Rowers Certified Refurbished Freeweights Benches & Racks Flooring Life Fitness is the global leader in the fitness…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Technology / Wellness

 
 

AUSTRALIAN WATERSLIDES AND LEISURE

A leading designer and manufacturer of innovative waterslides and attractions, Australian Waterslides and Leisure (AWL) is also able to advise clients in the areas of concept and design, feasibility…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Waterparks

 
 

SOLARWISE NSW DOLPHIN TECH

Solarwise NSW / Dolphin Tech were the first and are the largest Dolphin dealer in NSW with a full service facility and full range of spare parts "on the shelf". We also provide on site…

read more

Aquatics / Venues

 
 

EventPro

At EventPro Software, we are proudly different from our industry competitors. We have a development-driven culture and 20 years’ experience in event, venue, and catering management software,…

read more

Events / Hospitality / Technology / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

TRISLEYS HYDRAULIC SERVICES

Trisley's Hydraulic Services P/L (THS) are a specialised pool company dealing with all aspects of the commercial swimming pool industry, including the installation and servicing from the smallest…

read more

Aquatics / Design / Play / Waterparks

 
 

SLE WORLDWIDE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

SLE Worldwide Australia is a Managing General Underwriter specialising in insuring risks in the world of Sports, Leisure and Entertainment. Be it relaxing, playing, organising or watching sports,…

read more

Insurance / Venues

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business