Major

Exercise Science

Faculty Mentor(s)

Doctor Emily Simonavice

Keywords

Interval training, Memory Function, College Students

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to further investigate if exercise in the form of moderate intensity interval training influences memory function. While past studies have shown cognitive function improvements prior to both acute continuous moderate intensity exercise and high intensity interval training, no studies have been conducted to explore the effects of high intensity interval training on cognitive function. These previous studies also used a different method of measurement, a Stroop test, to measure cognitive function. This method is significantly different than the word recall test used in this study, which was designed to specifically assess cognitive function in a way that is more applicable to a specific population sample representative of college students. The population sample included a total of 20 participants. During the conduction of this study, participants engaged in both experimental and controlled conditions. During the controlled condition the participants were given three minutes to memorize a list of 15 words, followed by 15 minutes in a controlled environment, after which the participants were allowed three minutes’ to recall as many words as they could remember. The experimental portion of this study included the same methodology as the controlled apart from 15 minutes of interval training rather than a controlled environment. This study found no statistical significance between moderate intensity interval training and cognitive function, specifically short term memory. Therefore, this study failed to confirm that moderate intensity interval training evokes cognitive function benefits equivalent to those demonstrated in the previous studies.

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Effects of Interval Training on Memory Function, in College Students

The purpose of this study was to further investigate if exercise in the form of moderate intensity interval training influences memory function. While past studies have shown cognitive function improvements prior to both acute continuous moderate intensity exercise and high intensity interval training, no studies have been conducted to explore the effects of high intensity interval training on cognitive function. These previous studies also used a different method of measurement, a Stroop test, to measure cognitive function. This method is significantly different than the word recall test used in this study, which was designed to specifically assess cognitive function in a way that is more applicable to a specific population sample representative of college students. The population sample included a total of 20 participants. During the conduction of this study, participants engaged in both experimental and controlled conditions. During the controlled condition the participants were given three minutes to memorize a list of 15 words, followed by 15 minutes in a controlled environment, after which the participants were allowed three minutes’ to recall as many words as they could remember. The experimental portion of this study included the same methodology as the controlled apart from 15 minutes of interval training rather than a controlled environment. This study found no statistical significance between moderate intensity interval training and cognitive function, specifically short term memory. Therefore, this study failed to confirm that moderate intensity interval training evokes cognitive function benefits equivalent to those demonstrated in the previous studies.