THE EFFECTS OF EXERCISE ON COGNITIVE FUNCTION, AND BALANCE IN HEALTHY INDIVIDUALS - A PILOT STUDY

Joshua McGeown, Pabolo Sanzo, Carlos Zerpa, Simon Lees, Sarah Niccoli

Abstract


Concussion is defined as an injury to the brain caused by forces applied to the head. Approximately 10-20% of concussed individuals develop post-concussion syndrome (PCS), characterized by persistent symptoms beyond 10 days including balance and cognitive deficits. The purpose of this pilot study was to explore the effect of a four-week exercise program on physiological, cognitive, and balance variables in a sample of healthy, physically active individuals to gather preliminary information to apply to a future PCS population. Statistically significant changes in reaction time and balance measures were observed. No changes in heart rate, blood pressure, memory, or visual motor speed were observed. Balance improvements in this healthy sample suggest that future exploration of a similar exercise program in those experiencing PCS may provide valuable information.

Keywords


Aerobic; balance; exercise; cognition; concussion

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ISSN 1999-4168