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Language and physical fitness in older age - with Dr Foyzul Rahman

Dr Foyzul Rahman – Research Fellow in the School of Psychology

It has long been known that exercise is good for us, both in terms of our physical health and our mental health. However, exercise also plays an important role in combating some types of cognitive impairment typically seen in old age. For example, skills such as working memory, speed of processing information, and managing distracting information all deteriorate in healthy older adults. Language is another cognitive skill that declines with age, with older adults typically showing more language failures in comparison to younger adults. Recent evidence has shown that physical fitness (or aerobic exercise) can potentially protect against these forms of cognitive decline in old age, with fitter older adults found to show superior cognitive skills (including language skills) compared to those who do not exercise. In this video, I will talk about the potential benefits of exercise and physical fitness in protecting and maintaining cognitive skills in advanced age, with a particular focus on language abilities.

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