In her research, behavioral and learning scientist Marily Oppezzo tested groups of people as they brainstormed creative uses for everyday objects. She found that those who performed the exercise while seated averaged about 20 creative ideas in four minutes, but those who brainstormed while walking on a treadmill came up with close to double.
When the treadmill group tried the exercise while seated, they still beat the average -- meaning the potential creativity benefits tended to last even after they stopped walking. Oppezzo suggests taking a walk before your next big meeting or whenever you’re stuck, but she says it’s important to intentionally choose a problem or topic to brainstorm about as you move. To avoid forgetting any ideas you float, she suggests using a voice recording app.