Gymming Can Help You Achieve a Higher GPA

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By Sarah Thomas | July 18, 2014 1:19 PM EST

For those who thought there was no alternative to night-long studying and researching in a library for a high GPA, a recent study by the New Michigan State University (MSU) is here to help. The study found that more than working hard and reading books,and  breaking a sweat at the gym can increase the possibility of scoring a high GPA.

Reuters
Bodybuilders lift weights at a sports centre in Juba July 11, 2014. REUTERS/Andreea Campeanu (SOUTH SUDAN - Tags: SOCIETY SPORT WEIGHTLIFTING)

James Pivarnik, a professor of kinesiology and epidemiology at MSU, and MSU doctoral student Samantha Danbert in the Department of Kinesiology led the study, it was published in the Recreational Sports Journal.

The study involved 4,483 students who were members of the school's fitness centres and belonged to the freshman and sophomore years. Their academic progress was compared with that of the rest. Interestingly, the research showed that students who were members of the recreational sports and fitness centre's on the MSU campus had higher GPA's than the others. Most of them got a 4.0.

The research also found that such students with membership stayed in school longer and had more credits; there was also an increase in their retention rates by 3.5 per cent in just two years.

James Pivarnik, a professor of kinesiology and epidemiology at MSU, said that the total number of students deciding to move to a third year of school had reched 1,575 people within a student population of 49,000. "These results provide a compelling argument to universities that a higher student retention rate could be enhanced just by having adequate recreational and fitness facilities for student," he stated.

They found that the students' cumulative GPA's were 0.13 per cent higher, although this may not seem to be a great difference, he stated that in the end "that amount could mean the difference to those students on the cusp of getting into graduate school or even advancing to the next academic year."

This study would be of utmost importance to institutions as they can focus on a holistic development which ultimately contributes to the student's academic success. Apart from that, Pivarnik suggested that the results of the study are essential, "Not only are we retaining more students, but we're retaining those that have higher GPAs which is good for everyone."

So next time someone tells you the secret to good grades is to 'work hard and play harder', remember to immediately hit the gym.

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(Photo: Reuters / )
Bodybuilders lift weights at a sports centre in Juba July 11, 2014. REUTERS/Andreea Campeanu (SOUTH SUDAN - Tags: SOCIETY SPORT WEIGHTLIFTING)
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