Effects of Physical Activity on Cognitive Functioning in a Sample of Preadolescent Children

Victoria Gallego Zumaquero

Antonio Hernández-Mendo

Rafael E. Reigal Garrido

Rocío Juárez Ruiz de Mier

*Corresponding author: Rafael Enrique Reigal Garrido rafareigal@gmail.com

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Cite this article

Gallego Zumaquero, V., Hernández Mendo, A., Reigal Garrido, R. E., & Juárez Ruiz de Mier, R. (2015). Effects of Physical Activity on Cognitive Functioning in a Sample of Preadolescent Children. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 121, 20-27. https://doi.org/10.5672/apunts.2014-0983.es.(2015/3).121.03

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to analyse the effects of physical activity on cognitive functioning in a sample of preadolescent children. The participants in the study were 62 preadolescents (boys, n = 32; girls, n = 30) from the city of Malaga (Spain), aged between 10 and 12 years (M=10.48; SD=0.54). The study was based on a quasi-experimental pre-post design with one control and one experimental group. The instruments used to evaluate the cognitive skills were the Coding and Symbol Search tests of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-IV), as well as Interferencia, Senderos grises and Senderos de color of the Neuropsychological Assessment of Executive Functions battery for children (ENFEN). Also, as control variables, the study and rest time, as well as physical condition through body composition, maximal oxygen consumption and the standing long jump test were analysed. The results indicate significant effects of practising regular physical exercise on some measures of cognitive functioning assessed, although the data should be interpreted with caution due to the lack of significance in other measures analysed.

Keywords: Cognitive Functioning, Lifestyle, Physical Activity, Preadolescence.

ISSN: 1577-4015

Received: October 22, 2014

Accepted: February 27, 2015

Published: July 1, 2015