By Jennifer SullumBakersfield, CA (February 10, 2018)—A new study found that when swimming lessons were given at least once a week, subjects reported feeling better on the cognitive and physical health measures than they did during their regular class time.
The study, published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, was conducted by researchers at the University of California at Berkeley and University of Southern California, who focused on a cohort of over 40,000 participants who completed a baseline battery of tests before participating in a series of six-week swimming lessons.
The researchers asked the participants to complete three questionnaires: a short version of the Stroop test, a longer version of it and a self-report version.
The short version measures cognitive ability, while the longer version measures memory and concentration.
The longer version also assessed the extent to which participants remembered the exercises they were doing, and the self-reports assessed the number of times they engaged in the exercises themselves.
“We found that a weekly swim lesson seemed to improve cognitive function, and it did so with more than half the participants reporting improvement on the Stroopy,” said senior author Julie Gebhardt, a professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Psychology.
“These results suggest that a daily practice of swimming could improve cognitive and behavioral health, especially among those who have a stroke.”
The study also revealed that this benefit of a daily swimming lesson can be maintained across multiple cognitive domains, with cognitive ability remaining the most important determinant.
“The Stroop is a test of memory, which requires participants to press a button on a screen in front of a white circle to record the amount of white space that they have read in a line.
The Stroop also measures a person’s ability to focus on and remember information.
Gebhardt and colleagues hypothesized that a regular exercise class might improve the Stroope, which is used in the assessment of people with stroke.
Participants who participated in a regular swimming lesson received a daily dose of 200-400 strokes per week, which increased to 500 strokes per month if the participants were doing it for longer than six weeks.
The Stroopy also measures attention and executive function, which involves the ability to process information and perform complex tasks, including working out complex equations, planning a vacation and managing finances.
The current study looked at the effect of a weekly swimming lesson on cognitive function.
The researchers recruited people between the ages of 18 and 75 from the general public, as well as from an office environment, a hospital and a nursing home.
Participants completed a short Stroop questionnaire, and then were randomly assigned to a swimming lesson that had been provided three times a week for four weeks.
They then completed a shorter Stroop, which included the Stroops longer version.
A second set of questions measured cognitive ability.
Participants then completed the StroOP longer version, which contained more questions and a slightly longer Stroop.
The participants who had received a regular class were also randomly assigned into the study.
In addition, the researchers also asked the subjects to complete a second Stroop question and another self-reported measure of cognitive ability that measures memory.
The final measure was the Strooptometer, a test that measures cognitive function by measuring blood pressure and heart rate.
Gibson and colleagues found that subjects who received a weekly class of around 400 strokes per day for two weeks improved their Stroop scores by a mean of 14.8 points, and those who received 300 strokes per days improved their scores by 10.2 points.
Gipson said that this study provides the first evidence that a group of individuals who were given a daily swim lesson that included regular physical exercise were better able to manage the stroke risk.”
The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health and was conducted at UC Berkeley.”
This is the first study to show that regular exercise is associated not only with cognitive health, but with a protective effect on stroke risk.”
The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health and was conducted at UC Berkeley.