Effects of Acute Exercise on Resting EEG in Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Chung Ju Huang, Ching Wen Huang, Chiao Ling Hung, Yu Jung Tsai, Yu Kai Chang, Chien Ting Wu, Tsung Min Hung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


This two stage study examined the effects of acute exercise on resting electroencephalographic (EEG) patterns of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The first stage compared the neural oscillatory patterns of children with and without ADHD. Resting EEGs were recorded under an open-eyes condition from 24 boys with ADHD and 28 matched controls. The second stage of the study employed a randomized cross-over trial design. The 24 boys with ADHD engaged in a 30-min intervention that consisted of either running on a treadmill or watching a video on alternative days, with resting EEGs recorded before and after treatment. The first stage found that children with ADHD exhibited significantly higher theta/beta ratios over the midline electrodes sites than controls. The second stage further indicated that children with ADHD displayed smaller theta/beta ratios following the exercise condition compared with the video-watching condition. This finding suggests that acute exercise normalizes arousal and alertness of children with ADHD, as reflected in resting EEG readings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)993-1002
Number of pages10
JournalChild Psychiatry and Human Development
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 1


  • Cognitive benefits
  • EEG ratios
  • Inhibition
  • Physical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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