Mind+health

Stand on one leg to get a brain boost

Runner's World (UK) - - Content -

How a bal­anc­ing act can boost brain power

The one-legged squat (pic­tured, left), and other sim­i­lar bal­anc­ing ex­er­cises can do more than im­prove your core sta­bil­ity. A new study, pub­lished in Sci­en­tific Re­ports, sug­gests that prac­tis­ing bal­anc­ing moves also boosts your brain power. Af­ter 12 weeks of in­tense bal­ance train­ing, test sub­jects im­proved not only their abil­ity to show off, but also their short-term mem­ory. The re­searchers spec­u­late the ben­e­fits are re­lated to the neu­ral path­ways con­nect­ing the vestibu­lar sys­tem (re­spon­si­ble for co­or­di­na­tion) with the brain re­gions associated with mem­ory and nav­i­ga­tion. Prac­tis­ing bal­ance moves, they sug­gest, strength­ens these path­ways, trig­ger­ing per­for­manceen­hanc­ing ben­e­fits in the brain.

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