Don’t get us wrong, all exercises are good for you, but some forms of physical activities may yield higher benefits, say the results published in the university’s journal of physiology.
Studies on people and animals have found physical activity increases brain volume and might reduce the number and size of age-related holes in the brain’s white and grey matter, according to The New York Times. But it also increases the creation of new brain cells in mature brain.
For the first time, researchers from the Finnish university compared neurological impacts on rats after exposing them to different types of exercise: running, weight training and high-intensity interval training.
Seven weeks later, results showed significant differences levels of neurogenesis content in the hippocampus of the rat’s cerebrum.
In simple terms, it seems that running is not only good for your body, but also gives your brain a workout too and helps boost your capacity to learn.
Professor Heikki Kainulainen concluded that “aerobic exercise, such as running, has positive effects on brain structure and function”.
He added “it may be possible to increase the neuron reserve of the hippocampus and thus improve preconditions for learning by promoting neurogenesis via sustained aerobic exercise such as running”.
Obviously rats are not people, but these results suggest that running could benefit our brain health. However, experts are not clear about why only distance running leads to positive results.
It doesn’t mean that running eight hours per day will help you to become the next Einstein. Nevertheless, it should be another source of motivation to get yourself back into the workout gear.