Brain benefits from single workouts predict long-term benefits from exercise

  • A small study has shown that those who show the biggest brain benefits after a single exercise session also show the biggest long-term gains from a training program.

A small pilot study, in which participants had brain scans and working memory tests before and after single sessions of light and moderate intensity exercise and after a 12-week long training program, has shown that immediate cognitive effects from exercise mirror long-term ones. Participants who saw the biggest improvements in cognition and functional brain connectivity after single sessions of moderate-intensity physical activity also showed the biggest long-term gains in cognition and connectivity.

The finding suggests that the brain changes observed after a single workout study can be a biomarker of sorts for long-term training.

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-03/cns-eau032219.php

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The findings were presented by Michelle Voss at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society (CNS) in San Francisco, March 23-26, 2019.