Effects of an acute bout of resistance exercise on cognitive performance in preadolescents

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Michael A. Castellano (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Jennifer Etnier

Abstract: Over the past two decades a positive effect on cognitive performance has consistently been identified following an acute bout of aerobic exercise. (Etnier, Salazar, Landers, Petruzzello, Han, & Nowell, 1997). A limited number of studies have identified a similar positive effect following acute aerobic exercise in preadolescent samples (Ellemberg & St-Louise-Deschenes, 2010; Hillman, Pontifex, Raine, Castelli, Hall, & Kramer, 2009; Pesce, Crova, Cereatti, Casella, & Belluci, 2009; Tomporowski, 2003). Resistance exercise within adult samples has also been associated with increases in cognitive performance (Chang & Etnier, 2008, 2009; Chang, Ku, Tomporowski, Chen, & Huang, 2012). There is currently no existing research examining the effects an acute bout of resistance exercise has on the cognitive performance of a preadolescent sample. A possible reason for this lack of research is the misconception that resistance exercise can have detrimental effects on the developing bodies of preadolescents. These safety concerns have been deemed unnecessary as recent statements from both the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) have determined resistance exercise in preadolescence is safe and even beneficial to the bones, joints, and muscles of developing bodies. The purpose of this research was to examine the effects an acute bout of resistance exercise has on cognitive performance by a preadolescent sample. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two different treatment conditions (exercise or control). Participants in each condition completed a number of cognitive tasks testing executive function and completed a 20 minute bout of resistance exercise. Those in the exercise condition completed the cognitive tasks immediately after the resistance exercise. Those in the control condition completed the cognitive tasks immediately before the resistance exercise. Analyses revealed that for errors within the Stroop W condition, a measure of processing speed and inhibition, there was a significant difference between groups such that the exercise group had fewer errors at the post-test than the control group. There were no significant differences for task switching, problem solving, working memory, and visual attention between groups. The results for this sample thus suggest that resistance exercise may have a clinically meaningful effect on aspects of processing speed and inhibition.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2014
Cognition $x Effect of exercise on
Cognition in adolescence
Exercise for youth $x Psychological aspects

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