Questions for “Active bodies build stronger brains”

a line of kids doing push-ups

A new study links physical activity, particularly aerobic exercise, to healthier brains in early adolescence.

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To accompany “Active adolescence builds stronger, healthier brains


Before Reading:

1.  When you exercise, what parts of your body are likely to improve?

2.  Do teens exercise more or less than younger kids, as a rule — and why?

During Reading:

1.  What two things does the story point to that tend to happen during puberty?

2.  How many people did the researchers recruit for their new study and how old were these participants?

3.  What are MRI scans and what do they show?

4.  What is an accelerometer, how was it used it this study and for how long?

5.  What are five things other than MRI scans were measured in or recorded about the study’s recruits?

6.  What are VO2 max and perfusion and how did these differ among the study’s participants?

7.  What was different about the white matter in kids who were more athletically fit?

After Reading:

1.  Amanda Szabo-Reed mentions that the new study found a correlation but not a causal link. What does this mean? Why is that important? What other things might have played a causal role with the brain effects reported in this study?