Weight training improves cognitive function in senior women, a new Canadian research has found.
The study by the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility at Vancouver Coastal Health and the University of British Columbia is one of the first randomized controlled trials of progressively intensive resistance training in senior women.
The team led by Dr. Teresa Liu-Ambrose, researcher at the Centre and assistant professor in the Faculty of Medicine at UBC, discovered that a year of resistance training one or twice a week enhanced executive cognitive function in senior women aged between 65 and 75 years. Executive cognitive functions are cognitive abilities vital for independent living.
Liu-Ambrose said: "We were able to demonstrate that simple training with weights that seniors can easily handle improved ability to make accurate decisions quickly.
"Additionally, we found that the exercises led to increased walking speed, a predictor of considerable reduction in mortality."
Heather McKay, centre director and professor in the Faculty of Medicine at UBC, said: "At the Centre for Hip Health and Mobility we focus on research that will have a positive impact on the health of people in B.C. and Canada.
"Dr. Liu-Ambrose's research provides a clear illustration of relatively simple interventions with a profound and immediate impact on the mobility and quality of life of older adults."
The study has appeared in the Archives of Internal Medicine,