The Effectiveness of Aerobic Exercises on Components of Executive Functions in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Journal of Clinical Physiotherapy Research,
Vol. 6 No. 2 (2021),
Introduction: It is necessary to investigate the cognitive and behavioral status of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to improve their performance. Therefore, the aim of the present research was to investigate the effect of aerobic exercises on the components of executive functions (cognitive flexibility, impulsivity, response inhibition, and selective attention) in children with ADHD. Methods: This was a quasi-experimental study with pretest-posttest design. After performing the Raven screening test and SNAP-4, among the participants, 30 children aged 7-10 years who had IQ scores above 90 and met the ADHD criteria were randomly assigned to experimental (n:15) and control (n:15) groups. Before and after the intervention, both Stroop color and word test and continuous performance test were performed on both groups. Aerobic exercises were performed three sessions per week for three months in the experimental group. Data analysis was carried out using multivariate analysis of covariance. Results: The findings showed that aerobic exercise training had a significant increase on cognitive flexibility, response inhibition, and selective attention and significant reduction on the impulsivity in the experimental group compared to the control group. Conclusion: Aerobic exercise as a non-pharmacological and non-invasive treatment strategy, free of side effects, seems to be necessary to improve the executive functions of children with ADHD, which emphasizes the need for physical activity.
- Aerobics; Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder ;Executive Functions
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