Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD and Exercise
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by difficulty in concentrating, impulsivity, staying focused on tasks and being still. Often identified or at least suspected while in childhood, ADHD presents a challenge to parents, children and teachers alike. With this disorder, how can teachers and caregivers support a child in a way that facilitates learning and psychological development?
First, there needs to be a diagnosis, which is no small task. Evidence is collected from parents, teachers and others who come into contact with the child. Based on guidelines established by the American Psychological Association, a professional would make a determination of ADHD as the likely explanation for the behavior. Once so diagnosed, a child with ADHD is typically given learning support and other reinforcements to create conditions most favorable to meeting learning and developmental outcomes.
Although one cannot dismiss the importance of intelligent structure in these situations, there may be other instances in which caregivers may complement the core plan. Some research has hinted at nutritional deficits in ADHD; magnesium, B-complex and amino acid deficiencies. For those reasons, diet should be evaluated and improved as needed. In addition, neurological research has revealed that children with ADHD may benefit from specific, controlled physical exercise in conjunction with classroom learning. Exercise increases heart rate and blood flow throughout the body, including the brain. Further, physical activity enhances learning and memory. There is also some evidence that physical activity for children with ADHD effects brain chemistry in ways that positively impacts behavior.
This suggests a benefit to teachers who try to utilize movement to facilitate learning and behavioral compliance in ADHD students. However, it also leaves an opportunity for parents or other caregivers. Physical activity may have a positive effect on children, as well as adults with ADHD. In addition, exercise that requires active thinking may engage them in a manner that is beneficial for the development of coordination, memory, gross motor skills and self esteem.
A high energy workout with music that is both challenging and fun might be a wise choice. Chalene Johnson’s new workout might be adequately challenging and fun for both kids and adults. The Chalean Extreme Workout is a 90-day progressive program designed to create lean muscle mass while improving cardiovascular fitness and aerobic capacity; perfect outcomes for people challenged by ADHD. The program provides just enough structure so that it is easy to follow, but not so much that it becomes boring.
The Chalean Extreme Workout offers a good complement to school-based measures to help ADHD students learn and develop into their potential. Similarly, this workout may provide both a refuge and active path toward a more fulfilling life for adults with ADHD.
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