We all know that physical activity is good for the brain.It increases and intensifies intellectual functions and perception, but does not end there: it also inhibits the production of cortisol, the stress hormone, regulating emotions.
Another benefit of physical activity for the brain is to ensure a state of well-being and happiness . At some point, in fact, sport stimulates the production of serotonin. This chemical change allows you to experience great emotional well-being.
Dancing is like dreaming with your feet.
In the United States, some researchers have conducted interesting studies. The goal was to check out the benefits of walking, dancing and stretching . The scholars wondered what of these three activities had more positive effects. To this end, they involved a group of volunteers to carry out an experiment. Read on to know the methods and results of the study.
The experiment on the relationship between physical activity and brain
First, scholars formed a group of 174 volunteers . They had overtaken all 60 and some 70. At this age, there is a degeneration of white matter in the brain. The effects of this condition are different, such as memory difficulties and deterioration of cognitive functions in general.
Volunteers generally had a sedentary lifestyle . Most of them did not do any physical activity. Those who, on the other hand, were engaged in sport, did so sporadically and for a short time. They were therefore an ideal group to test the changes in physical activity on the brain.
Initially, volunteers have undergone an aerobic test. Then they did some tests to determine their cognitive abilities and the processing speed of data received in the lab . The tests set the starting point before starting the experiment.
Physical activities in comparison
The group of volunteers was divided into three subgroups. No pattern was followed, subdivision was random. The first of these groups started with a walk program . The participants had to walk, fast pace, for an hour three times a week.
The second group had to stretch . It was to do muscle stretching exercises three times a week. In addition, they had to perform supervised exercises of balance and other minor skills.
The third group went to dance lessons three times a week . They did not just have to dance, but also learn a choreography that became more and more complex with the passing of time. The dance style chosen was not at all easy: the country.
The results of the experiment
The experiment lasted for six consecutive months for all three groups. Six months later, several tomographs and magnetic resonances were made to see what changes had affected the brain. Some results have met the expectations, but others have proved to be amazing .
At the beginning of the program, the white matter of the brain was more deteriorating in people who had a more sedentary life. Then, there was an improvement in all participants. Everyone has improved in the results of the cognitive and memory tests to which they were subjected after the experiment.
The most surprising thing was the results of the third group, that is, that he was engaged in learning a complex choreography of dance. All indexes were higher than those of other participants. Experts believe that dance is both physical and mental, social and playful. As a result, it is more complete . In fact, in many participants there was an increase in the density of white matter in the brain.
Agnieszka Burzynska, one of the research leaders, revealed that a similar study was conducted in 2014. On that occasion, it was possible to see that more people were sitting, the more their brain deteriorated, even though at the end of the day it was devoted to physical activity. The most important conclusion to these scholars is that a sedentary lifestyle compromises the health and function of the brain. Physical activity re-activates it and dancing or dancing is much more effective than other types of exercise.