Fit Body – Fit Brains

There is an increase in evidence indicating that children with higher fitness levels have healthier brains. Indeed, the different physical fitness tests included in the FitBack project have shown to be positively related to better cognitive performance, better executive functioning, intelligence, and academic performance.

This animation is prepared to be presented to adolescents while commented by teacher.

This scenario will help you understand how improving physical fitness is closely linked to cognitive development in the short term and maintaining cognitive health as we age. The animation exemplifies this situation, making it easier for you to understand the different processes.

References / Further reading
  1. Mora‐Gonzalez, J., Rodríguez‐López, C., Cadenas‐Sanchez, C., Herrador‐Colmenero, M., Esteban‐Cornejo, I., Huertas‐Delgado, F. J., Ardoy, D. N., Ortega, F. B. in Chillón, P. (2017). Active commuting to school was inversely associated with academic achievement in primary but not secondary school students. Acta Paediatrica, 106(2), 334–340. DOI: 10.1111/apa.13679
  2. Esteban-Cornejo, I., Stillman, C. M., Rodriguez-Ayllon, M., Kramer, A. F., Hillman, C. H., Catena, A., Erickson, K. I. in Ortega, F. B. (2021). Physical fitness, hippocampal functional connectivity and academic performance in children with overweight/obesity: The ActiveBrains project. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 91, 284–295. DOI: 10.1016/j.bbi.2020.10.006
  3. Cadenas‐Sanchez, C., Migueles, J. H., Erickson, K. I., Esteban‐Cornejo, I., Catena, A. in Ortega, F. B. (2020). Do fitter kids have bigger brains? Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 30(12), 2498–2502. DOI: 10.1111/sms.13824
  4. McDaniel, M. A. (2005). Big-brained people are smarter: A meta-analysis of the relationship between in vivo brain volume and intelligence. Intelligence, 33(4), 337-346. DOI: 10.1016/j.intell.2004.11.005

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