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11/12/2014
We’re sure that as a parent you recognize the importance of exercise for good physical health, but exercise also brings many benefits that don’t manifest themselves outwardly. The Tutoring Center in Katy would like to take a moment to tell you about some of the positive effects exercise has on children’s cognitive development and emotional health.

Exercise boosts brain growth

Physical activity causes the brain to boost production of a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor. Don’t let the fancy name fool you, its function is relatively simple; this protein encourages the growth of new brain cells and prompts neurons to communicate and connect in new and different ways. Your child’s brain is still growing during their years in school, so this function of exercise is more apparent in them than in older people.

Exercise helps focus and attention

A 2009 study published in Neuroscience found that children performed better in standardized tests after a period of moderate exercise than children who took the test after a period of sitting still. This, and a number of other studies, indicate that exercise helps children blow off some steam outside the classroom meaning they can concentrate in the classroom.

There are links between regular exercise and academic achievement

Two 2007 studies from the University of Illinois found that children getting 40 minutes of daily exercise consistently outperformed children who were getting 20 minutes of exercise a day academically. These effects seem to be consistent regardless of gender, race, or socioeconomic background, so it would appear that all children benefit from regular exercise.

Exercise leads to a healthy brain

There are well-established links between regular exercise and a reduced risk of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s and dementia in old age, and many studies indicate that adults who get regular exercise show better memory function.

To recap, then—exercise appears to be a boon for cognitive development, and the benefits are most apparent if children receive regular exercise (aim for one hour a day) and have a chance to exercise before class.

There are many further ways you can help your child excel (see our guide to helping improve your child’s memory, for example), but if your child appears to be struggling in any academic area, please don’t hesitate to contact The Tutoring Center. Our expert staff tailor their teaching to each individual student’s needs, so think about us next time you require tutoring in Katy. Call 832-437-0635 to find out more.

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