Physical Fitness and Resting EEG in Children With Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: An Exploratory Study

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Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are characterized by a deviant pattern of brain oscillations during resting state, particularly elevated theta power and increased theta/alpha and theta/beta ratios that are related to cognitive functioning. Physical fitness has been found beneficial to cognitive performance in a wide age population. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the relationship between physical fitness and resting-state electroencephalographic (EEG) oscillations in children with ADHD. EEG was recorded during eyes-open resting for 28 children (23 boys and 5 girls, 8.66 ± 1.10 years) with ADHD, and a battery of physical fitness assessments including flexibility, muscular endurance, power, and agility tests were administered. The results indicated that ADHD children with higher power fitness exhibited a smaller theta/alpha ratio than those with lower power fitness. These findings suggest that power fitness may be associated with improved attentional self-control in children with ADHD.

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