Physical exercise is a great way to keep your mind sharp. But did you know that some exercises can improve memory? These can be done with or without equipment and require a minimal time investment. They range from easy-to-learn, low-intensity aerobic movements to challenging strength training workouts. With these powerful techniques, you’ll have the potential for improving your memory by leaps and bounds!
HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training)
This type of high-intensity interval training is excellent for those who don’t have time to go to the gym. It combines short bursts of intense activity with periods of rest. For example, you can run as fast as you can up a hill or stairs, then walk down until your heart rate returns to normal, then sprint again as many times as you can in a row! This type of cardio exercise increases BDNF levels which improve memory function.
This is another type of exercise that helps improve your memory by providing increased strength and flexibility, increasing neural pathways to the brain. It also offers many benefits, such as building muscle mass, reducing stress levels, and improving cognitive function. In addition, Pilates focuses on balance and breathing, which will increase your self-awareness, similar to yoga’s effects. A study found that women who performed Pilates regularly actually had brains that were 8% larger than those who did not!
This type of exercise is often described as “meditation in motion.” It’s essentially an exercise that incorporates slow, deliberate movements, meaning it won’t provide the intensity needed for larger muscle growth. However, this type of exercise can be highly beneficial to older adults looking for a low-impact exercise to reduce the risk for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Tai Chi works by increasing blood flow to the brain, which stimulates neurogenesis (growth) in the hippocampus area of the brain. This growth is associated with improved memory function. As if that wasn’t enough, Tai Chi also reduces stress levels and increases mental clarity making it an overall great way to keep your mind sharp!
Yoga is another excellent exercise to improve memory. It reduces stress levels, increases awareness, and lowers cortisol levels, which are great for improving mental function. It works by increasing blood flow throughout the body, including your brain. This increased circulation naturally stimulates neurons resulting in enhanced cognitive function similar to what’s seen through an aerobic activity like HIIT or Pilates/dancing!
This is a great way to improve memory by challenging your brain and body! Strength training has actually been shown to increase BDNF levels and neurogenesis, which will all lead to improved memory function. To continue seeing results from this type of exercise, you’ll have to overload the muscle with more weight over time progressively. This forces the muscles and their support systems to adapt, resulting in a stronger overall structure.
Running is one of the best ways to improve memory because it stimulates neurogenesis in the brain. Running also helps reduce stress levels, improves cardiovascular health, and has been shown to help fight against depression which all contribute to improved cognitive function! It can be especially beneficial for those looking for a form of exercise that provides both physical and mental benefits.
There are many different types of physical exercises you can do to improve your memory. Tai Chi, yoga, lifting weights, dancing, running, and swimming are all great options, while cycling is another excellent way to improve memory! However, you’ll need to increase the difficulty over time, which means that if something seems too easy, then it’s not going to be as effective. Remember that consistency is key, so try and work out at least three times a week at a minimum!