New York: Besides cutting down on sedentary time in class, standing desks can help students improve cognitive functioning which are directly related to academic skills, say researchers, including one of Indian-origin.
The researchers assessed the cognitive functions of high school students who used standing desks.
“Test results indicated that continued use of standing desks was associated with significant improvements in executive function and working memory capabilities,” said one of the researchers Ranjana Mehta, assistant professor at Texas A&M University in the US.
Executive functions are cognitive skills we all use to analyse tasks, break them into steps and keep them in mind until we get them done.
These skills are directly related to the development of many academic skills that allow students to manage their time effectively, memorise facts, understand what they read, solve multi-step problems and organise their thoughts in writing.
Using an experimental design, Mehta explored the neurocognitive benefits using four computerised tests to assess executive functions.
Because these functions are largely regulated in the frontal brain regions, a portable brain-imaging device (functional near infrared spectroscopy) was used to examine associated changes in the frontal brain function by placing biosensors on students’ foreheads during testing.
“Changes in corresponding brain activation patterns were observed,” Mehta noted.
The study was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.