Scientists say paddle sports aid physical exercise as well as boosting brainpower

If you are heading off on one of our residential school trips, you will be pleased to read the recent news that scientists have revealed activities such as paddle sports not only improve well-being physically, they also offer increases in the participants’ brainpower.

A group of children on residential school trips with Outdoor Adventure

A recent study has discovered that paddle sports, along with sports such as cross-country skiing are the best types of sports, over the shorter, more intense workouts such as interval or strength training. These activities help to train your brain in addition to the physical benefits.

The research also found that long distance-style running had a far bigger impact on memory and learning as opposed to weight training or high-intensity workouts. The participants who were involved in the study, carried out a series of sprints and ladder climbs with weights attached to them, whilst also carrying out longer distance runs.

The scientists conducting the research found that the sustained aerobic exercises offered the clearest boost in the formation of new brain cells, predominantly in the hippocampus – the region of the brain that controls learning and memory.

Miriam Nokia, a researcher at a Finnish university who led the study, told The New York Times that “sustained aerobic exercise might be most beneficial for brain health in humans.”

Scientists and researchers have been aware of the fact that endurance exercise has memory-beneficial properties, as well as mood and attention span-improving traits, but this new research compares it to both strength and interval training.

It is thought that the reason endurance training is better at training your brain is due to the fact it is less physiologically stressful than interval or weight training.