Does active leisure protect cognition? Evidence from a national birth cohort
AbstractSocial, physical and intellectual activities are thought to facilitate cognitive performance and slow the rate of age associated cognitive decline, but little is known about this association in younger adulthood. We used multiple regression to test the association between two kinds of activity at 36 years--physical exercise and spare-time activity--and verbal memory at 43 and 53 years in 1919 males and females enrolled in the MRC National Survey of Health and Development (the British 1946 birth cohort). Both kinds of activities were significantly and positively associated with memory performance at 43 years, after controlling for sex, education, occupational social class, IQ at 15 years, and recurrent ill health and significant mental distress. Furthermore, physical exercise at 36 years (but not spare-time activity) was associated with a significantly slower rate of decline in memory from 43 to 53 years, after controlling for the same factors, with evidence that continuing physical exercise after 36 years was important for protection. We conclude that physical exercise and spare-time activity are significantly associated with benefit to memory in midlife, although these two kinds of voluntary activity may exert their effects on cognition via different paths.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.
Volume (Year): 56 (2003)
Issue (Month): 4 (February)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Desjardins, Richard & Warnke, Arne Jonas, 2012.
"Ageing and Skills: A Review and Analysis of Skill Gain and Skill Loss Over the Lifespan and Over Time,"
57089, ZBW - German National Library of Economics.
- Richard Desjardins & Arne Jonas Warnke, 2012. "Ageing and Skills: A Review and Analysis of Skill Gain and Skill Loss Over the Lifespan and Over Time," OECD Education Working Papers 72, OECD Publishing.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wendy Shamier).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.