Exercise does in fact Improve Brain Function

by kchas1 on November 19, 2014 - 1:51pm

Kyle Chase

News Activist post

                                                        Exercise does in fact Improve Brain Function


In the book titled the New Science of Learning we learn that studies have found that exercise has a direct influence on synapses’ growth and binding. Synapses are structures in the brain that allow brain cells to send off electrical or chemical signals to another cell. When this happens cells combine and form networks. Exercise prepares and encourages these relations to form resulting in a heightened ability to learn and retain new information. Some evidence that reinforces this findings validity can come from an experiment conducted on Illinois’ Naperville Public Schools. This experiment, conducted in 1999 consisted of aerobic exercise being added into the junior high curriculum. The results of this study were very significant. The students test score increased tremendously and they did well on tests in which U.S. schools often did in-superior in comparison to other nations. The 8th grade students of this school finished first in the world in science, and sixth in mathematics. They also found a 66% decline in student behavioral problems. (Ratey, 2008, p.14).


I believe this finding was fairly concreate. The results were extremely significant, and they proved them to be significance by explaining that before this experiment these students were at or below average in comparison to their neighboring schools. And after the study they were the number one in science and number six in math out of every school in the world. I think it would have been interesting to have seen them go back to the same group of students a year or two later and conduct the same experiment but TAKE OUT the aerobic exercise, and see if there test scores drop accordingly. I strongly connect with these finding in my life time because I have found that I am always more enthusiastic and focused on learning after a long run or after any other type of aerobic exercise.  I think this experiment was solid and believable. And they have done a good job of being thorough in their research and findings.


Our government should consider this fact and apply it in our schools. It will certainly help many students to concentrate in class and interest them a lot more in their studies.

I really like how you showed how this learning strategy was applied. I think that it is a very smart thing to do, and that all schools (especially elementary and high school) should be doing this. It will keep the students active (considering that many of them are not, due to technology addictions!) and help them improve their skills. It also helps to improve memory, so people would start remembering things better. I found a link that is very interesting and that adds on to your point. At the end, there's a section that tells you what to do if you want to try it on your own. Here's the link:

I think that the examples are very well explained and the learning strategy presented shows great potential in finding ways to improve student performance and learning. I think that it is a very good and easy way for the students to improve their learning abilities. It is also very easy for schools to take the initiative of adding more physical education classes, since it is proven to help student performance. The examples and statistics in the post are very useful in proving that this is a learning strategy that works. Looking more into the subject, I found a very interesting article on CBC News discussing the findings of an experiment made in Ontario, where students participated in more physical activities, the results also prove, like the experiment you mentioned that performance was improved.
Here is the link:

I believe that the point you bring up from this article is actually very relevant for student's today. Body image is a big part of a student's world today and sometimes they find themselves with so much to study that they don't even have time to think about going for a run. However, with this article and the link that I will provide later on there is plenty of research that shows that the little run that you may be thinking about doing is actually worth the time in order to do well in your studies. Exercising should not be a hassle, it should be pleasant and a way to get away from all the stress from work or school.


I think the fact that they tested this on students in order to see if the physical activity improve the brain function was effectively use because they were first able to see that the test did improve the grades of the students which is really indicative to the point that they were able to be in the top ranking worldwide regarding the grades in certain class like science and math. Furthermore, the fact that it doesn’t only improve the grades of one person but also they had decline in their behavior problems which shows that this technique of learning is really working and that it is not only improving one thing but many.

I think the points discussed are very important to remember and are covered quite thoroughly. It's important to remember that students need to focus on health and exercise just as much as the next person, and in some ways, as mentioned, it's very beneficial to their studies. The study used is very relevant to the topic, and helps in proving why exercise is an important activity for students. Here is an article about how exercise helps to keep students intellectually fit. It also explains that students with better fitness levels often have a more developed mind.

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