Complex Mental and Physical Activity in Older Women and Cognitive Performance : A 6-month Randomized Controlled Trial

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2010
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Evers, Andrea
Schwarzer, Ralf
Schlattmann, Peter
Reischies, Friedel M.
Heuser, Isabella
Dimeo, Fernando C.
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The Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. 2010, 65A(6), pp. 680-688. ISSN 1079-5006. eISSN 1758-535X. Available under: doi: 10.1093/gerona/glq053
Zusammenfassung

Background
Several reports suggest beneficial impacts of either physical or mental activity on cognitive function in old age. However, the differential effects of complex mental and physical activities on cognitive performance in humans remain to be clarified.

Methods
This randomized controlled trial evaluates a cognitive and a physical standardized 6-month activity intervention (3 × 1.5 h/wk) conducted in Berlin (Germany). Two hundred fifty nine healthy women aged 70–93 years were randomized to a computer course (n = 92), an exercise course (n = 91), or a control group (n = 76), of whom 230 completed the 6-month assessment. Group differences in change over a period of 6 months in episodic memory (story recall, possible range, 0–21; word recall, possible range, 0–16), executive control (working memory, ie, time quotient of Trail Making Tests B/A), and verbal fluency were evaluated by analyses of covariance (intention to treat) adjusting for baseline, fluid intelligence, and educational level.

Results
In contrast to the control group, both the exercise group, ΔM (SD) = 2.09 (2.66), p < .001, and the computer group, ΔM (SD) =1.89 (2.88), p < .001, showed improved delayed story recall. They maintained performance in delayed word recall and working memory (time measure) as opposed to the control group that showed a decline, ΔM (SD) = −0.91 (2.15), p = .001, and ΔM (SD) = 0.24 (0.68), p = .04, respectively.

Conclusions
In healthy older women, participation in new stimulating activities contributes to cognitive fitness and might delay cognitive decline. Exercise and computer classes seem to generate equivalent beneficial effects.

Zusammenfassung in einer weiteren Sprache
Fachgebiet (DDC)
150 Psychologie
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Mental activity, Physical activity, Cognitive performance, Older adults
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ISO 690KLUSMANN-WEISSKOPF, Verena, Andrea EVERS, Ralf SCHWARZER, Peter SCHLATTMANN, Friedel M. REISCHIES, Isabella HEUSER, Fernando C. DIMEO, 2010. Complex Mental and Physical Activity in Older Women and Cognitive Performance : A 6-month Randomized Controlled Trial. In: The Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. 2010, 65A(6), pp. 680-688. ISSN 1079-5006. eISSN 1758-535X. Available under: doi: 10.1093/gerona/glq053
BibTex
@article{KlusmannWeikopf2010-06Compl-14480,
  year={2010},
  doi={10.1093/gerona/glq053},
  title={Complex Mental and Physical Activity in Older Women and Cognitive Performance : A 6-month Randomized Controlled Trial},
  number={6},
  volume={65A},
  issn={1079-5006},
  journal={The Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences},
  pages={680--688},
  author={Klusmann-Weißkopf, Verena and Evers, Andrea and Schwarzer, Ralf and Schlattmann, Peter and Reischies, Friedel M. and Heuser, Isabella and Dimeo, Fernando C.}
}
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