18 Jul EXERCISE & CHILD BRAIN PERFORMANCE
We have always known that exercise is beneficial for our overall health, but did you know that it can also enhance brain performance?
Engaging in regular physical activity not only benefits the body but also sharpens thinking, enhances memory, and improves learning abilities. Encouraging children to play and exert energy outdoors promotes a healthy heart and also supercharges their mental circuits. In this article, we will explore the positive link between exercise and brain performance in children and discover fun ways to incorporate outdoor activities into their routine.
The Positive Link between Exercise and Brain Performance:
Psychiatrist J. Ratey MD has extensively studied the connection between aerobic activity and learning. He found that even moderate exercise can significantly improve cognitive function, sharpen thinking skills, and enhance memory. While we don’t expect young children to engage in rigorous workouts, encouraging them to play and exert energy outside achieves a similar goal. For kids of any age, regular outdoor activity, laughter, play, and physical exertion contribute to their overall brain development.
Benefits of Outdoor Exercise for Kids:
Improved Cognitive Function:
Exercise increases blood flow and oxygen to the brain, promoting the growth of new neurons and enhancing cognitive function.
Enhanced Memory and Learning:
Physical activity stimulates the release of neurochemicals in the brain that improve memory and learning abilities.
Many outdoor play activities, whether solitary, team-based, or competitive, require hand-eye coordination, which helps develop this crucial skill.
Fun and Enjoyment:
Outdoor exercise allows children to have fun, laugh, and enjoy themselves, creating positive associations with physical activity.
Encouraging outdoor exercise for children doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive.
Well-designed play centres offer great activities, but they can be costly for regular visits or families with multiple children. Instead, consider having outdoor fun activities available in your own yard. This can include a trampoline, jumping castle, activity centre with climbing and sliding features, or even setting up an obstacle course with various games and equipment. By providing these opportunities, you empower your children to engage in regular exercise and create lasting memories.
Children are more likely to participate in outdoor exercise if they see their parents or caregivers engaging in it too. So, be a role model by actively participating in physical activities and inviting your children to join you. Encourage family outings, bike rides, hikes, or simply playing games in the backyard. By supercharging your own mental circuits and enhancing your memory, you’ll keep up with the kids and inspire them to lead an active and healthy lifestyle.