- So for the new study, which was published recently in PLOS One, researchers in China and Italy decided to home in on language learning and the adult brain.
- Specifically, the students would ride exercise bikes at a gentle pace (about 60 percent of their maximum aerobic capacity) beginning 20 minutes before the start of the lessons and continuing throughout the 15 minutes or so of instruction.
- When the researchers asked the students to return to the lab for a final round of testing a month after the lessons — without practicing in the meantime — the cyclists remembered words and understood them in sentences more accurately than did the students who had not moved.
- This study involved college students performing relatively light exercise, though, and cannot tell us whether other people completing other types of exercise would achieve the same results.
- But many past studies have shown that exercise prompts the release of multiple neurochemicals in the brain that increase the number of new brain cells and the connections between neurons, Dr. Sulpizio says.
Working out during a language class amplifies an adult’s ability to memorize, retain and understand new vocabulary.
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