Cognitive Functioning Differences Between Physically Active and Sedentary Older Adults
Older adults engaging in regular physical activity can help create a buffer toward cognitive decline. The main aim of this study was to assess the effects of physical activity and cognitive functioning on a sample of young-old and old-old physically active adults and young-old and old-old sedentary adults. Cognitive functioning was examined using the digit span test, Wisconsin card sorting task. The National Task Group-Early Detection Screen for Dementia measure was used explore the relationship between scores and physical activity and sedentary adults. Findings from the study showed partial support for physical activity has a positive relationship with cognitive functioning. The results found Young-old adults did better on the DST than all other groups regardless of being sedentary or physically active. Young-old physically active adults, however, did better on the DST latency measure than sedentary adults while old-old physically active adults did worse on the DST latency measure compared with old-old sedentary adults. The results also found that Physically active adults had a better score on the NTG-EDSD measure compared to the sedentary adults. Findings showed no significant differences for the WCST. Future research exploring the relationship between physical activity and cognitive functioning should do so by having more control over the extraneous variables.
Source: Younan B. Cognitive Functioning Differences Between Physically Active and Sedentary Older Adults. J Alzheimers Dis Rep. 2018 May 26;2(1):93-101. doi: 10.3233/ADR-180053.