Exercise and the Brain

Evidence suggests that aerobic training enhances cognitive function (i.e. thinking and memory) and delays aging-related memory problems. This is an especially important topic today, because the US population of people over 65 years old is expected to double over the next 25 years. During this time, it will be more important than ever to understand how activities such as aerobic exercise help delay aging-related cognitive decline. 

We have several exciting research studies that are focused on understanding how aerobic exercise helps cognition and the brain. We hope to determine if exercise increases attention and memory.


shutterstock_830697281Am I eligible?

We are looking for participants who are sedentary (not currently exercising).

 What do I get?

Participants receive:

  • Payment for testing sessions
  • Complimentary YMCA gym membership (PlusOne or Dodge Fitness Center for Columbia affiliates)                                                 



Please click on one of the studies below to get more information and specific study criteria.

You participation in our studies involves:

• Coming to Columbia University Medical Center for an informed consent session

• Fitness tests

• Two week orientation phase

• MRI scans

• Blood draws

• Cognitive tests

• Exercising at a YMCA fitness Center four times a week for an hour at a time


If you are interested in participating, please go to our “Join Now” section and provide your information so that one of our Research Assistants can contact you. You may also call us at 646-774-8952.


** Participants who are randomly assigned to the aerobic exercise group will have their gym membership covered for the duration of the study and will receive a bonus 2-month YMCA gym membership upon completion of the study. Participants who are assigned to the waitlist group will receive a 5-month bonus YMCA gym membership upon completion of the study.