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The Effect of an Acute Bout of Moderate-Intensity Aerobic Exercise on Motor Learning of a Continuous Tracking Task.

Snow NJ, Mang CS, Roig M, McDonnell MN, Campbell KL, Boyd LA - PLoS ONE (2016)

Bottom Line: There is evidence for beneficial effects of acute and long-term exercise interventions on several forms of memory, including procedural motor learning.We also quantified changes in offline motor memory consolidation, which occurred between practice and retention (offline).Tracking error was separated into indices of temporal precision and spatial accuracy.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Graduate Program in Rehabilitation Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

ABSTRACT

Introduction: There is evidence for beneficial effects of acute and long-term exercise interventions on several forms of memory, including procedural motor learning. In the present study we examined how performing a single bout of continuous moderate intensity aerobic exercise would impact motor skill acquisition and retention in young healthy adults, compared to a period of rest. We hypothesized that exercise would improve motor skill acquisition and retention, compared to motor practice alone.

Materials and methods: Sixteen healthy adults completed sessions of aerobic exercise or seated rest that were immediately followed by practice of a novel motor task (practice). Exercise consisted of 30 minutes of continuous cycling at 60% peak O2 uptake. Twenty-four hours after practice, we assessed motor learning with a no-exercise retention test (retention). We also quantified changes in offline motor memory consolidation, which occurred between practice and retention (offline). Tracking error was separated into indices of temporal precision and spatial accuracy.

Results: There were no differences between conditions in the timing of movements during practice (p = 0.066), at retention (p = 0.761), or offline (p = 0.966). However, the exercise condition enabled participants to maintain spatial accuracy during practice (p = 0.477); whereas, following rest performance diminished (p = 0.050). There were no significant differences between conditions at retention (p = 0.532) or offline (p = 0.246).

Discussion: An acute bout of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise facilitated the maintenance of motor performance during skill acquisition, but did not influence motor learning. Given past work showing that pairing high intensity exercise with skilled motor practice benefits learning, it seems plausible that intensity is a key modulator of the effects of acute aerobic exercise on changes in complex motor behavior. Further work is necessary to establish a dose-response relationship between aerobic exercise and motor learning.

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Spatial accuracy (shifted root-mean-square error [RMSE]) performance on the continuous tracking (CT) task.A) Raw shifted RMSE values at baseline (T0), acquisition (T1, T2), and retention (T3) under exercise (black line) and rest (grey line) conditions. Smaller shifted RMSE values indicate greater spatial accuracy. The inlaid box represents the 30-minute exercise bout or rest period. B) Shifted RMSE change scores between baseline, acquisition (T0-T1, T0-T2), and retention (T0-T3) blocks, under exercise (black bars) and rest (grey bars) conditions. Greater change scores indicate greater spatial accuracy. Additionally, performance was significantly reduced from the first to the second acquisition block under the rest condition (p = 0.05). Spatial accuracy did not differ between conditions at retention (p > 0.05). The vertical dotted lines in A and B represent the 24 ± 2 hours between CT practice and retention days. Error bars in A and B represent mean ± standard error of mean (SEM).
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pone.0150039.g004: Spatial accuracy (shifted root-mean-square error [RMSE]) performance on the continuous tracking (CT) task.A) Raw shifted RMSE values at baseline (T0), acquisition (T1, T2), and retention (T3) under exercise (black line) and rest (grey line) conditions. Smaller shifted RMSE values indicate greater spatial accuracy. The inlaid box represents the 30-minute exercise bout or rest period. B) Shifted RMSE change scores between baseline, acquisition (T0-T1, T0-T2), and retention (T0-T3) blocks, under exercise (black bars) and rest (grey bars) conditions. Greater change scores indicate greater spatial accuracy. Additionally, performance was significantly reduced from the first to the second acquisition block under the rest condition (p = 0.05). Spatial accuracy did not differ between conditions at retention (p > 0.05). The vertical dotted lines in A and B represent the 24 ± 2 hours between CT practice and retention days. Error bars in A and B represent mean ± standard error of mean (SEM).

Mentions: Group plots of shifted RMSE by time-point (T0, T1, T2, T3), under the exercise and rest conditions, are shown in Fig 4A. Group plots of time lag change score by time-point (T0-T1, T0-T2, T0-T3) are displayed in Fig 4B.


The Effect of an Acute Bout of Moderate-Intensity Aerobic Exercise on Motor Learning of a Continuous Tracking Task.

Snow NJ, Mang CS, Roig M, McDonnell MN, Campbell KL, Boyd LA - PLoS ONE (2016)

Spatial accuracy (shifted root-mean-square error [RMSE]) performance on the continuous tracking (CT) task.A) Raw shifted RMSE values at baseline (T0), acquisition (T1, T2), and retention (T3) under exercise (black line) and rest (grey line) conditions. Smaller shifted RMSE values indicate greater spatial accuracy. The inlaid box represents the 30-minute exercise bout or rest period. B) Shifted RMSE change scores between baseline, acquisition (T0-T1, T0-T2), and retention (T0-T3) blocks, under exercise (black bars) and rest (grey bars) conditions. Greater change scores indicate greater spatial accuracy. Additionally, performance was significantly reduced from the first to the second acquisition block under the rest condition (p = 0.05). Spatial accuracy did not differ between conditions at retention (p > 0.05). The vertical dotted lines in A and B represent the 24 ± 2 hours between CT practice and retention days. Error bars in A and B represent mean ± standard error of mean (SEM).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4764690&req=5

pone.0150039.g004: Spatial accuracy (shifted root-mean-square error [RMSE]) performance on the continuous tracking (CT) task.A) Raw shifted RMSE values at baseline (T0), acquisition (T1, T2), and retention (T3) under exercise (black line) and rest (grey line) conditions. Smaller shifted RMSE values indicate greater spatial accuracy. The inlaid box represents the 30-minute exercise bout or rest period. B) Shifted RMSE change scores between baseline, acquisition (T0-T1, T0-T2), and retention (T0-T3) blocks, under exercise (black bars) and rest (grey bars) conditions. Greater change scores indicate greater spatial accuracy. Additionally, performance was significantly reduced from the first to the second acquisition block under the rest condition (p = 0.05). Spatial accuracy did not differ between conditions at retention (p > 0.05). The vertical dotted lines in A and B represent the 24 ± 2 hours between CT practice and retention days. Error bars in A and B represent mean ± standard error of mean (SEM).
Mentions: Group plots of shifted RMSE by time-point (T0, T1, T2, T3), under the exercise and rest conditions, are shown in Fig 4A. Group plots of time lag change score by time-point (T0-T1, T0-T2, T0-T3) are displayed in Fig 4B.

Bottom Line: There is evidence for beneficial effects of acute and long-term exercise interventions on several forms of memory, including procedural motor learning.We also quantified changes in offline motor memory consolidation, which occurred between practice and retention (offline).Tracking error was separated into indices of temporal precision and spatial accuracy.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Graduate Program in Rehabilitation Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

ABSTRACT

Introduction: There is evidence for beneficial effects of acute and long-term exercise interventions on several forms of memory, including procedural motor learning. In the present study we examined how performing a single bout of continuous moderate intensity aerobic exercise would impact motor skill acquisition and retention in young healthy adults, compared to a period of rest. We hypothesized that exercise would improve motor skill acquisition and retention, compared to motor practice alone.

Materials and methods: Sixteen healthy adults completed sessions of aerobic exercise or seated rest that were immediately followed by practice of a novel motor task (practice). Exercise consisted of 30 minutes of continuous cycling at 60% peak O2 uptake. Twenty-four hours after practice, we assessed motor learning with a no-exercise retention test (retention). We also quantified changes in offline motor memory consolidation, which occurred between practice and retention (offline). Tracking error was separated into indices of temporal precision and spatial accuracy.

Results: There were no differences between conditions in the timing of movements during practice (p = 0.066), at retention (p = 0.761), or offline (p = 0.966). However, the exercise condition enabled participants to maintain spatial accuracy during practice (p = 0.477); whereas, following rest performance diminished (p = 0.050). There were no significant differences between conditions at retention (p = 0.532) or offline (p = 0.246).

Discussion: An acute bout of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise facilitated the maintenance of motor performance during skill acquisition, but did not influence motor learning. Given past work showing that pairing high intensity exercise with skilled motor practice benefits learning, it seems plausible that intensity is a key modulator of the effects of acute aerobic exercise on changes in complex motor behavior. Further work is necessary to establish a dose-response relationship between aerobic exercise and motor learning.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus