Honors Theses

Date of Award

Spring 5-8-2020

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Health, Exercise Science, and Recreation Management

First Advisor

Paul Loprinzi

Second Advisor

Ling Xin

Third Advisor

Mark Loftin

Relational Format



Accumulating research suggests that acute exercise may enhance memory function. Limited research, however, has evaluated whether the movement patterns of acute exercise may have a differential effect on memory. Such an effect is plausible, as research demonstrates that open-skilled exercise (e.g., racquetball) may have a greater effect on memory-related neurotrophins (e.g., brain-derived neurotrophic factors) when compared to closed-skilled exercise (e.g. treadmill exercise). A key distinction between open- and closed-skilled exercise is that open-skilled exercises are those that require an individual to react in a dynamic way to a changing, unpredictable environment. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether retrospective is differentially influenced from open- and closed-skilled acute exercise. A within-subject design was employed. Participants (Mage = 20.6 yrs; 69% female) completed two visits, in a counterbalanced order. The two experimental conditions included open-skilled acute exercise (racquetball) and closed-skilled acute exercise (treadmill exercise), each lasting 30-min at 60% of heart rate reserve. During both experimental conditions, retrospective memory was evaluated across multiple word-list trials (e.g., Trials 1-6, 20-min delay, 24-hr delay). For retrospective memory, there was a significant main effect for condition, F(1, 57) = 5.33, p = .02, η2 = .004, main effect for trial, F(4.12, 234.9) = 227.85, p < .001, η2 = .46, but no condition by trial interaction, F(4.63, 264.08) = 1.022, p = .40, η2 = .002. Retrospective memory was greater after closed-skilled exercise (treadmill) when compared to open-skilled exercise (racquetball).

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



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