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Does Exercise Improve Cognitive Performance? A Conservative Message from Lord's Paradox

Title: Does Exercise Improve Cognitive Performance? A Conservative Message From Lord's Paradox.
Name(s): Liu, Sicong, author
Lebeau, Jean-Charles, author
Tenenbaum, Gershon, author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Date Issued: 2016-07-21
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Although extant meta-analyses support the notion that exercise results in cognitive performance enhancement, methodology shortcomings are noted among primary evidence. The present study examined relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in the past 20 years (19962015) for methodological concerns arise from Lord's paradox. Our analysis revealed that RCTs supporting the positive effect of exercise on cognition are likely to include Type I Error(s). This result can be attributed to the use of gain score analysis on pretest-posttest data as well as the presence of control group superiority over the exercise group on baseline cognitive measures. To improve accuracy of causal inferences in this area, analysis of covariance on pretest-posttest data is recommended under the assumption of group equivalence. Important experimental procedures are discussed to maintain group equivalence.
Identifier: FSU_libsubv1_wos_000380013400001 (IID), 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.01092 (DOI)
Keywords: aerobic exercise, ANCOVA, base-line, clinical-trial, cognition, elderly-people, Executive functions, exercise intervention, experimental group equivalence, false positive error, gain score analysis, healthy older-adults, middle-aged adults, physical-activity, randomized controlled-trial, review, statistics notes
Publication Note: The publisher’s version of record is available at
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Owner Institution: FSU
Is Part Of: Frontiers in Psychology.
Issue: vol. 7

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Liu, S., Lebeau, J. -C., & Tenenbaum, G. (2016). Does Exercise Improve Cognitive Performance? A Conservative Message From Lord's Paradox. Frontiers In Psychology. Retrieved from