Aerobic Activity Improves Mathematical Skill

A recent study shows that children in the age group of 9-10 years old tend to have a thinner gray matter in their brain if they are aerobically fit, making them better at math skills than other children.

Laura Chaddock-Heyman the lead researcher from University of Illinois said that *‘gray-matter loss during child development was a part of healthy maturation, adding that gray matter thinning was the sculpting of a fully formed, healthy brain’. *The research study shows that fitter 9 and 10-year-old children showed a decrease in gray matter thickness in certain areas known to change with development.

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The study observed children post maximal oxygen-uptake fitness test on a treadmill, mapped their brain’s using an MRI, and tested their math, reading and spelling skills using a Wide Range Achievement Test-3 to understand the correlation*correlation*
➤ (n) a reciprocal relation between two or more things
➤ (n) a statistic representing how closely two variables co-vary; it can vary from -1 (perfect negative correlation) through 0 (no correlation) to +1 (perfect positive correlation)
➤ (n) a statistical relation between two or more variables such that systematic changes in the value of one variable are accompanied by systematic changes in the other
of the impact of fitness levels on the brain. A difference in math skills and cortical brain structure was detected between higher-fit and lower-fit children.

Researchers encouraged physical activity, and recommend schools and academic institution to implement better health practices in order to positively impact children in brain development, and analytical skills.