Wednesday, November 2, 2011

"Exercise" Your Brain!

Do you ever feel like your brain is on "overload"? After a good workout I always find that my brain is swirling with ideas like it just woke up! Is this a coincidence? Absolutely not!

In addition to a plate of omega-3's, our brains thrive on a serving of exercise. Research shows that exercise has a direct benefit to the brain which results in improved cognitive performance, a decrease in depression and improved tolerance to stress.
Now, most of us know this as adults, but what about our kids? Numerous studies support the same results with our children, yet our schools have decreased the amount of physical education and recess.

My son's first grade teacher ( pictured above on Halloween) loves to exercise. She knows how it benefits her students so she has a creative way of "sneaking" in more physical activity with her class. Her supply list that she sends home includes 2 cans of food that we send in at the beginning of the year. Nope, it's not for donating to a food bank. These little ones use the cans for hand weights! Before lunch, most days of the week you will find Mrs. Hoy's first grade class up out of their chairs, "weights" in hand, doing all kinds of steps and moves. They follow along with an exercise video and get moving!

So, what are you doing for yourself and your family to "exercise" your brains? It doesn't have to be structured and planned. In fact, unplanned, unstructured, free play is the best kind of exercise!

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