I came accross this recent study after a conversation with my brother,the second stage of a research project into the relationship between motorcycle riding and brain stimulation conducted jointly by Tohoku University and Yamaha is due to wrap up this month, December 2010.
Findings of the first stage of this project released in Mar 2009 found that:
– riding a motorcycle activates prefrontal areas of the brain;
– differences in brain use and level of brain stimulation can be observed in motorcyclists who ride regularly and in motorcyclists who have not ridden for extended periods;
– Incorporating motorcycle riding into daily life improves various cognitive functions and has positive effects on mental and emotional health such as stress reduction.
The area activated covers memory, information processing and concentration functions.
Past research data has indicated the prefrontal area does not work as much when driving an automobile.