Movement is Good for our Brains

Multiple studies have shown that exercise, even walking, massively improves cognitive and creative brain function.

Harvard professor John J. Ratey, in his book Spark, tells the story of a school in Naperville, Illinois, that scored 1st in the world in the international science TIMSS test.

This is not some private boarding school. It’s an average school, except for one thing…it has a physical fitness requirement. Compared to the national average (30%) only 3% of the population at Naperville is overweight.

The fact that Naperville is the fittest school AND the smartest school supports that regular exercise is good for our brains.

Not all our kids are sporting superstars, but all of them need to move, even if it is small amounts.

How do we get our kids moving?

  • Walk the dog
  • Take them for a walking chat.
  • Encourage different study positions, postures and move regularly

Movement Helps Us Live Longer

In addition to a healthy diet and psychosocial well-being, regular exercise can improve both life expectancy and quality of life and help in the prevention and control of chronic disease.

(Gremeaux, V., et al., Exercise and longevity. Maturitas, 2012. 73 (4): p. 312-317.)

Other studies have shown that regular exercise was as effective as Zoloft for fighting depression.

Take home message= MOVE

How can you implement movement into your day?

Movement tip #1

Have a walking meeting: If you are meeting a friend for a coffee and a chat, meet at the café, go for a short walk and talk, then stop and have the coffee afterwards. Easy!