Aerobic Exercise Stimulates Learning and Memory

Aerobic Exercise Stimulates Learning and Memory

Along with the start of a new academic year, recent findings among young adults show they can boost their cognitive performance after something as easy as a brisk walk.

New research that reviewed 13 previously published studies demonstrates the remarkable effectiveness of a single exercise session for memory and learning abilities of young adults. 

After the participants, aged between 18-35, took part in moderate to high-intensity aerobic activities such as walking, cycling, and running, they showed significant improvements in:

  • concentration,
  • attention,
  • both short and long-term memory,
  • sentence processing and long-lasting linguistic ability,
  • executive functions of planning and problem‐solving,
  • learning functions.

The workouts lasted from 2 minutes to one hour. The positive effect remained for up to 2 hours, as the analysis showed. 

For example, in one of the studies, a 15-minute moderate-intensity walk right before taking a test helped students improve their learning and long‐term episodic memory.

So, riding a bike to college or hitting a treadmill before starting working at home will promote both physical health and cognitive performance.


Exercise has positive effects on learning and memory in young adults

Effects of a single exercise workout on memory and learning functions in young adults—A systematic review