Skip to main content
Skip to main content

WKU News

5 Reasons College Students Should Make Time For Exercise

College students, especially online college students, have packed schedules. Classes, employment, and family or social obligations quickly fill up your calendar. It seems cruel to add another obligation to the list, but here’s one to consider: exercise. Scientific evidence is piling up that shows regular exercise provides important cognitive benefits that could make your scholarly efforts a little less taxing.

Exercise Stimulates Brain Cell Development

Recent human and animal studies show that regular aerobic exercise has profound effects on the brain. A recent New York Times article, “How Exercise Could Lead To A Better Brain” , describes experiments performed on mice at the University of Illinois. Mice who ran regularly on a wheel had more neurons—brain cells—than those who did not.

Also, mice who ran regularly had more complex connections between neurons, meaning they were able to access their brain cells more flexibly. Finally, the mice who ran regularly did better on cognitive tests, such as completing a maze. There's evidence that this direct relationship also exists in humans.

Exercise Improves Memory Retention

The hippocampus is a structure in the brain that controls the formation, retention, and recall of memories. In most adults, the hippocampus starts to shrink slightly starting in the late 20s, leading to memory loss over time. Evidence from a 2011 study, recounted in the New York Times article mentioned above, shows that exercise prevents this shrinkage and may even promote regrowth.

A group of senior citizens were randomly assigned to a stretching program or a walking program for a year. After the year was over, the stretching group’s brains were scanned, and their hippocampuses had shrunken according to normal expectations. In the walking group, however, the hippocampus had grown. For college students, the implication is clear: regular exercise could benefit the parts of your brain that help you recall information.

Exercise Increases Focus and Concentration

In 2009, a Canadian school for learning-disabled and ADHD children took part in an experiment that involved having students exercise for 20 minutes on treadmills or exercise bikes before starting their math class. Teachers noted a marked improvement in students’ ability to concentrate, participate, and retain informationduring the class after they had exercised. Inappropriate behavior also improved in the group that exercised.

Additional experiments of this type, such as those taking place at Naperville Central High near Chicago, IL, suggest that three 20-minute sessions a week is the minimum dose needed to reap the concentration-enhancing benefits of exercise.

Exercise Boosts Mood

Numerous studies have shown that exercise profoundly improves your mood. A 1999 Duke study into the effects of exercise on depression had some participants work out while others took a well-known anti-depressant medication. By the end of the study, the exercise group showed as much improvement in mood as the medication group did. So college students looking to maintain their positive attitude to succeed can benefit from regular exercise.

Exercise Relieves Stress

Prolonged stress can lead to health problems, such as heart attacks and stomach problems. Exercise, by helping you sleep better and easing anxiety, can relieve the negative effects of stress on your body. Many regular exercisers also find that they can focus constructively on problems during or after a bout of exercise.

So make time for exercise. Choose an activity you love that gets your heart rate up, whether it’s hiking, running, or dancing, and put it on your schedule the way you would any other appointment or class for at least three 30-minute sessions a week. You’ll soon be reaping the benefits that exercise offers the scholar: a sound mind in a healthy body.

 

For additional info., click: http://www.aiuniv.edu/Student-Life/Blog/September-2012/5-Reasons-College-Students-Should-Make-Time-For-Exercise

Categories
All News  Now Viewing Category: All
Kinesiology, Recreation & Sport
CEBS
WKU Regional Campuses
DELO News
Housing & Residence Life
Math News
Glasgow News
WKU Educational Leadership Doctoral Program News
School of Journalism & Broadcasting
Media Relations
Academic Affairs
Augenstein Alumni Center
Instruments of American Excellence
Transportation
Emergency Preparedness
Police
Department of Music
Department of Theatre & Dance
Library News
Office of Sustainability
Office of International Programs
Office of Research
Ogden News
PCAL
WKU Parent and Family Weekend
Parent's Association
Student Activities and Organizations
Scholarships Student Financial Assistance
Student Government Association News
Van Meter Auditorium
Teaching News
Study Abroad
Student Research Council
Student Employment
WKU Joint Admissions
International Student Office
Human Resources News
Cultural Enhancement Series
CHHS News
The Confucius Institute
Campus Activities Board
GFCB
WellU
The Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky
Development and Alumni Relations
Downing Student Union
Health Services
Hardin Planetarium
News from The Center for Gifted Studies
Student Financial Assistance
Downing Museum
Etown & Fort Knox
Facilities
Employee Wellness
Latest Headlines
Hardin Planetarium to present eclipse show May 2-July 2

"Into the Shadow of the Disappearing Sun," the first of two shows about eclipses, will be presented May 2-July 2 at WKU’s Hardin Planetarium.

WKU Student, Madeline Marita, Receives a Prestigious Place on a Fulbright Summer Institute to the Globe Theatre (London, England)

Madeline Marita, a student from Western Kentucky University, has received a place on a Fulbright Summer Institute to study at the Globe Theatre (London, England) on one of the most prestigious and selective summer scholarship programmes operating world-w

WHY GO TO COLLEGE?

The decision to further your education is one of the most important decisions you’ll make in your life. Often the hardest part of the journey is to get started.

Featured Articles
Regents approve tuition, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

WKU’s Board of Regents approved tuition and mandatory student fees for 2018 fiscal year and approved consolidating Engineering, Architectural and Manufacturing Sciences and Computer Science into the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

WKU to rename building in honor of Rep. Jody Richards

WKU’s Board of Regents approved renaming Mass Media and Technology Hall to honor long-time WKU supporter and state representative Jody Richards of Bowling Green.

WKU Bike4Alz group to ride across country again this summer

WKU students will bike across the country this summer to raise money for Alzheimer’s research.

Note: documents in Portable Document Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher to view,
download Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Note: documents in Excel format (XLS) require Microsoft Viewer,
download excel.

Note: documents in Word format (DOC) require Microsoft Viewer,
download word.

Note: documents in Powerpoint format (PPT) require Microsoft Viewer,
download powerpoint.

Note: documents in Quicktime Movie format [MOV] require Apple Quicktime,
download quicktime.

 
 Last Modified 4/18/17