A wealth of evidence has shown that a single bout of aerobic exercise can facilitate executive function. However, none of current studies on this topic have addressed whether the magnitude of the acute-exercise benefit on executive function and oculomotor performance is influenced by different aerobic exercise modes. The present study was thus aimed toward an investigation of the acute effects of high-intensity interval exercise (HIIE) vs. moderate-intensity continuous exercise (MICE) on executive-related oculomotor performance in healthy late middle-aged and older adults. Using a within-subject design, twenty-two participants completed a single bout of 30 min of HIIE, MICE, or a non-exercise-intervention (REST) session in a counterbalanced order. The behavioral [e.g., reaction times (RTs), coefficient of variation (CV) of the RT], and oculomotor (e.g., saccade amplitude, saccade latency, and saccadic peak velocity) indices were measured when participants performed antisaccade and prosaccade tasks prior to and after an intervention mode. The results showed that a 30-min single-bout of HIIE and MICE interventions shortened the RTs in the antisaccade task, with the null effect on the CV of the RT in the late middle-aged and older adults. In terms of oculomotor metrics, although the two exercise modes could not modify the performance in terms of saccade amplitudes and saccade latencies, the participants’ saccadic peak velocities while performing the oculomotor paradigm were significantly altered only following an acute HIIE intervention. The present findings suggested that a 30-min single-bout of HIIE and MICE interventions modulated post-exercise antisaccade control on behavioral performance (e.g., RTs). Nevertheless, the HIIE relative MICE mode appears to be a more effective aerobic exercise in terms of oculomotor control (e.g., saccadic peak velocities) in late middle-aged and older adults.
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