Walking and Improved Memory

Ever thought about holding a walking meeting at work? Instead of getting together in a drab meeting room, try conducting your meeting on-the-go. Plan a walk down the street or in a nearby park.

According to research published in the European Journal of Developmental Psychology, there is a connection between walking and improved memory, specifically working (or short-term) memory in adults as well as children.

Walking and Improved Memory

Walking and improved memory: instead of sitting down during a meeting, go for a walk. It just might make everyone a little smarter (and a little leaner).

The headline finding was that the working memory performance of both age groups improved when walking at their chosen speed compared with when sitting or walking at a fixed speed set by the researchers. This was especially the case for more difficult versions of the working memory task, and was more pronounced among the children than the adults. So, this would appear to be clear case of mental performance actually being superior in a dual-task situation.

It’s a rather scientific article, but if you’re interested, you can read more about how the study was done here.

What this means for you is that sometimes multi-tasking is not a bad thing, as in the case of walking and using your memory at the same time. Since walking seems to inject energy into the thinking process, it’s a beneficial alternative to sitting.

It reminds me of the Treadmill desk. Ever heard of it? It was invented by Dr. James Levine at the Mayo Clinic. (You can read a little about it here.) He designed it to fight off obesity, but based on the research connecting walking and improved memory, it may even make you smarter at work.

What do you think of that? Share your comments below.


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