Can Swimming Improve Mental Health in Children with ADHD?

Research Paper Title

Swimming training improves mental health parameters, cognition and motor coordination in children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Background

The aim of this study was to verify the effects of swimming-learning programme of mental health parameters, cognition and motor coordination in students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Methods

Thirty-three children of both sexes between 11 and 14 years were randomised into trained group (n = 18) and untrained group (n = 15).

The training was performed for 8 weeks.

Then, before and after 48 hours of training period of both groups were submitted to find the mental health, cognition, motor coordination test, and physical fitness.

Results

The results demonstrate that the aquatic exercise programme significantly improved the depression parameters (p = 0.048), stress (p = 0.039), cognitive flexibility (p = 0.042) and selective attention (p = 0.047).

In relation to motor coordination and physical fitness, the results showed significant improvements in the coordination of lower limbs laterality (p = 0.05), flexibility (p = 0.049), and abdominal resistance (p = 0.037).

Conclusions

Taken together, the results suggest that swimming-learning programme significantly improved the mental health, cognition, and motor coordination in children with ADHD.

Reference

Da Silva, L.A., Doyenart, R., Salvan, P.H., Rodrigues, W., Lopes, J.F., Gomes, K., Thirupathi, A., De Pinho, R.A. & Silveira, P.C. (2020) Swimming training improves mental health parameters, cognition and motor coordination in children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. International Journal of Environmental Health Research. 30(5), pp.584-592. doi: 10.1080/09603123.2019.1612041. Epub 2019 May 13.

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