The effect of differing intensities of acute cycling on preadolescent academic achievement

Authors: Duncan, M. and Johnson, A.

Journal: European Journal of Sport Science

Volume: 14

Issue: 3

Pages: 279-286

eISSN: 1536-7290

ISSN: 1746-1391

DOI: 10.1080/17461391.2013.802372


The present study examined the effects of differing intensity levels of acute exercise on preadolescent academic ability. In a repeated measures design, 18 preadolescent participants (mean age±S.D.=9.8±1.4 years: 9 male and 9 female) completed the Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT 4) following 20 minutes of rest, 20-minutes on a cycling ergometer at 50% maximal heart rate reserve (HRR), and 20-minutes on a cycling ergometer at 75% HRR on separate days. Exercise was found to improve spelling irrespective of intensity level. Moderate levels of exercise improved reading although the effect of high levels of intensity is less clear. Both intensity levels impaired arithmetic, whilst sentence comprehension was unaffected. These findings further support the past research that indicates acute bouts of exercise can selectively improve cognition in preadolescent children. However, the present study finds no support for the notion that increasing the intensity of exercise accentuates benefits. © 2013 © 2013 European College of Sport Science.

Source: Scopus