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Effects of Low and Moderate Acute Resistance Exercise on Executive Function in Community-Living Older Adults

Naderi, Aynolla, Shaabani, Fatemeh, Esmaeili, Ali, Salman, Zahra, Borella, Erika and Degens, H ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7399-4841 (2019) Effects of Low and Moderate Acute Resistance Exercise on Executive Function in Community-Living Older Adults. Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology, 8 (1). pp. 106-122. ISSN 2157-3905

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Abstract

The aim of the study was to examine the influence of acute bouts of low and moderate resistance exercise on the executive function of community-living older adults. Forty older adults (20 men and 20 women; age range: 60-75 years) were randomly assigned to an exercise or control group. The exercise group completed two 45-min resistance exercise bouts at 40% and 70% of their individual 10-repetition maximum on different days, whereas the control group watched an exercise-related video. To assess immediate and delayed effects of exercise on executive function, tests assessing working memory, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility were performed before (pre-test), and 15 and 180 mins after the exercise. Exercise improved executive function, but no change was observed in the control group. The exercise-induced gains were i) larger after moderate than low intensity exercise, ii) similar for women and men, and iii) larger at 15 than 180 min after exercise. These results indicate that exercise improves, at least transiently, executive function in healthy older adults.

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