Friday, January 6, 2012

Exercise Your Way to an A

Exercise can help keep your kids fit.  But now it looks like it might also help keep them smart.   Turns out this is another example of the overall health benefits of exercise, especially as children and their brains are developing. 

A group of Dutch scientists combed through earlier research on children to see how exercise affected them.   They looked at over 12 thousand children from the United States, Canada and South Africa. 

These researchers found a huge connection between exercise and academic performance.   As a matter of fact, they found the more physically active children had higher test scores.   These scores were especially high in math, English and reading.  According to the authors of this study, part of the reason this might be happening is that exercise increases the blood and oxygen flow to the brain.  This helps increase the hormones that reduce stress and simultaneously allows the development of new cells in the brain which help with academics. 

So in addition to hitting the books, getting regular exercise this year might translate to a better report card.