A2 Review article, Literature review, Systematic review
Effects of Resistance Training on Academic Outcomes in School-Aged Youth : A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis (2023)

Robinson, K., Riley, N., Owen, K., Drew, R., Mavilidi, M. F., Hillman, C. H., Faigenbaum, A. D., Garcia-Hermoso, A., & Lubans, D. R. (2023). Effects of Resistance Training on Academic Outcomes in School-Aged Youth : A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports Medicine, 53(11), 2095-2109. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-023-01881-6

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsRobinson, Katie; Riley, Nicholas; Owen, Katherine; Drew, Ryan; Mavilidi, Myrto F.; Hillman, Charles H.; Faigenbaum, Avery D.; Garcia-Hermoso, Antonio; Lubans, David Revalds

Journal or seriesSports Medicine



Publication year2023

Publication date19/07/2023


Issue number11

Pages range2095-2109

PublisherSpringer Science+Business Media

Publication countrySwitzerland

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessPartially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/88602


The primary aim of our systematic review and meta-analysis was to investigate the effect of resistance training on academic outcomes in school-aged youth.

We conducted a systematic search of six electronic databases (CINAHL Complete, PsycINFO, SCOPUS, Ovid MEDLINE, SPORTDiscus and EMBASE) with no date restrictions. Studies were eligible if they: (a) included school-aged youth (5–18 years), and (b) examined the effect of resistance training on academic outcomes (i.e., cognitive function, academic achievement, and/or on-task behaviour in the classroom). Risk of bias was assessed using the appropriate Cochrane Risk of Bias Tools, funnel plots and Egger’s regression asymmetry tests. A structural equation modelling approach was used to conduct the meta-analysis.

Fifty-three studies were included in our systematic review. Participation in resistance training (ten studies with 53 effect sizes) had a small positive effect on the overall cognitive, academic and on-task behaviours in school-aged youth (standardized mean difference (SMD) 0.19, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.05–0.32). Resistance training was more effective (SMD 0.26, 95% CI 0.10–0.42) than concurrent training, i.e., the combination of resistance training and aerobic training (SMD 0.11, 95% CI − 0.05–0.28). An additional 43 studies (including 211 effect sizes) examined the association between muscular fitness and cognition or academic achievement, also yielding a positive relationship (SMD 0.13, 95% CI 0.10–0.16).

This review provides preliminary evidence that resistance training may improve cognitive function, academic performance, and on-task behaviours in school-aged youth.

PROSPERO Registration

Keywordstrainingcognitive processesschool-age childrenchildren (age groups)young peoplesystematic reviewsmeta-analysis

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2023

JUFO rating3

Last updated on 2024-14-06 at 23:06