As a busy, cash strapped and time strapped student, you might find it difficult to schedule time and /or resources to engage in physical activity. But did you know that regular exercise and physical activity can actually help you become a better student?
Exercise has been almost conclusively proven to be the most effective way to improve memory and attention. We know that people who exercise are 50% less likely to develop dementia. The reason for this is surprising but simple: When we exercise vigorously new cells are actually formed in our brain. This effect is further strengthened and reinforced when you use your brain just after exrercising. So ig you hit the gym, or go for a run,and then sit down to study you are much more likely to retain information permanently.
A recent study performed at the University ofof British Columbia also determined that regular aerobic exercise ( the one that gets your heart pumping) appears to actually increase the size of your hippocampus the part of your brain responsible for learning. This becomes more active during vigorous exercise and like a muscle when you use it a lot, it strengthens and enlarges.
If you go for a walk to clear your head after a day hitting the books, you might find that you feel more clear headed. This is not just an arbitrary or imaginary sensation. A lot of the reason for this has to do with blood flow. Research has shown that when we exercise, more blood flows everywhere in our bodies, including our brains. More blood means more energy and more oxygen which makes our brain perform better.
Exercise can alos improve your overall emotional well being. The well documented rush of endorphins that exercise produces floods your bloodstream although it is unclear just how much of this reaches your brain. It can also trigger off the endocannabinoid system which enhances pleasurable receptors and reduces pain feeling receptors. There is also strong evidence that regular exercise can help those who suffer from depression and anxiety and while more research is needed in his area, it is becoming increasingly recognised as an alternative or complementary treatment to antidepressants and other medication.
Exercise may also boost your creativity levels by enhancing cognitive ability and assisting with the brains capacity to problem solve creatively. More research is needed as to why and how this happens, but hey, it can’t hurt, right?
Whether you love it or hate it, the evidence is difficult to ignore. Regular exercise can give you a critical in your learning efficacy. So hit the gym, hit the field or simply hit the pavement. Your brain will love you for it! And if you can’t find the motivation, perhaps winning a CDU Gym membership will do ti. Check out our June competition and get your fitness on with our new CDU Gym range.