Neuroprotective Benefits of Strength Training
The big reason to stay consistent with a program of exercise is the benefit it has on neural health. More of our brain’s real estate is devoted to movement than language, math, reading, or texting. Moving well and moving often creates the essential neurochemicals that keep our brains healthy. The type of exercise that is most beneficial has been the subject of significant research. Gretchen Reynolds has written an interesting *article on a recent study that demonstrated that weight training is “neuroprotective”. Please take the time to read this article and consider adding strength training to your fitness program.
Consistent exercise builds neural connections, immunizes us from depression, and greatly reduces pain. Physical therapy patients and fitness clients frequently say the most beneficial aspects of a renewed devotion to exercise is the improvement in their mood. Hundreds of studies have demonstrated the positive effects movement has on brain chemistry. All of the happiness promoting and pain suppressing molecules are boosted with frequent and challenging movement. Levels of endorphins, serotonin, and BDNF- Miracle Gro for you neurons, all increase with exercise. Some of the most revealing research on pain science demonstrates that “pain circuitry” is repaired with exercise.
Michael O’Hara PT, OCS, CSCS