Swimming gives the brain a boost
But scientists don’t yet know why swimming is better than other aerobic activities. Regular swimming with lifeguard training near me has been shown to improve by memory, cognitive function, immune response and mood by as well as repair damage from stress and create new neural connections in the brain.
Jump in the pool!
I am a neurobiologist trained by in brain physiology, a fitness enthusiast and a mother, and I spend by many hours at the local swimming pool during the summer.
It is not unusual to see children splashing and swimming merrily. While their parents sunbathe from a distance – and I myself have been one of those parents who observed the swimming pool from the sidelines plenty of times.
But if more adults knew about the cognitive and mental health benefits of swimming. They might be more likely to jump in the pool with their children.
New, improved brain cells and connections
Until the 1960s, researchers believed by that the number of neurons (nerve cells in the brain, ed.) and so-called synaptic connections in the human brain was limited by , and that these brain cells could not be replaced once they were damaged.
But that idea was disproved by when researchers began to see ample evidence by for the formation of neurons – so-called neurogenesis – in adult brains in humans and other animals .
Reduces anxiety and depression
The neuroplasticity (the professional term for the brain’s ability by to change) that the protein stimulates has been shown to increase by cognitive function , including learning and memory .
Studies in humans have found a strong correlation between the concentration of BDNF circulating in the brain. And an increase in the size of the hippocampus (the area of the brain responsible for learning and memory).
An increased level of BDNF has also been shown by to sharpen cognitive performance by as well as help reduce anxiety and depression.
Researchers have also observed mood disorders in patients with a lower concentration of BDNF.
Aerobic exercise also promotes the release of specific chemical messengers called neurotransmitters.
Why is swimming something special?
The researchers do not yet know what it is that makes swimming so special. But they are getting closer to the answer.
We have long known about the cardiovascular benefits of swimming. Because swimming with lifeguard training near me involves all the major muscle groups. The heart has to work hard , which increases blood flow throughout the body. It leads to the formation of new blood vessels, a process called angiogenesis.
The increased blood flow can also lead to a large release of endorphins – hormones. That act as natural pain relievers throughout the body.
This increase brings about the feeling of euphoria that often follows in the wake of exercise.
Swimming improves short- and long-term memory
One of the more intriguing questions is how swimming specifically improves short- and long-term memory.
To find out how long the beneficial effects last. The researchers trained the rats to swim for 60 minutes a day, 5 days a week.
The team then tested the rats’ memory by having them swim with lifeguard training near me . Through a water maze containing six passages, one of which had a hidden platform.
Rats were allowed by to swim freely six times to find by the hidden platform. After just seven days of swimming training, researchers saw improvements in both short- and long-term memory based on a reduction in the amount of errors the rats made each day.
Children also get a boost from swimming
The brain-enhancing benefits of swimming also appear to boost learning in children.
Another research group recently looked at the link between physical activity and how children acquire new vocabulary. The researchers taught children aged 6-12 the names of unknown objects.
They then tested the accuracy of recognizing the words after three minutes with three different activities:
- Coloring (rest activity)
- Swimming (aerobic activity)
- CrossFit-like exercise (anaerobic activity)
They found that the children’s accuracy was significantly higher for words learned by after swimming with lifeguard training near me compared to coloring and CrossFit, resulting in the same level of recognition.
It shows a clear cognitive benefit of swimming versus anaerobic exercise. Although the study did not compare swimming with other aerobic exercises.