Scientists discover exactly when we hit our physical and mental peaks | The Sun

AGEING can be a scary prospect.

But a growing body of scientific evidence suggests that in some aspects, life can actually get better the older we get.

So the good news is that while we may have peaked in one endevor, we are likely improving in another. 

For example, teens may have all the energy, but older adults tend to have the best vocabulary.

Here's what you have to look forward to, or say goodbye to.

Learning a second language is easiest between the ages of 7-8

Experts are still at knuckleheads over about this one.

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But it's commonly accepted that the best time to pick up a second language is when very young.

The majority of experts believe starting before before puberty is peak time – specifically before eight years old.

Processing speed peaks at 18

Humans ability to think quickly and recall information like names is at its best at 18, according to a study from neuroscientists at MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital.

Very soon after this, often by just 19, it begins to decline.

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Physical strength peaks at 25

Your muscles are at their peak ability in terms of strength when you're 25, a study from the University of Toronto suggests.

This is particularly the case for sports like sprinting and swimming, which requires speed, power and maximum oxygen consumption.

The average elite marathoner is 28

Although physical strength peaks at 25 – studies suggest it doesn't begin to decline for some time.

This is back up by one 50-year analysis of marathons, which discovered the the average age to complete the race in just over two hours (which is pretty speedy) was 28.

Chess players peak around 35

Playing chess involves a certain level of cognitive ability, involving processing speed, planning, fluid intelligence and memory.

Economists from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, analysed 24,000 professional chess matches to track the performance of top players.

They discovered that performance rose sharply until the early 20s and peaked around the age of 35.

Ability to focus peaks at 43

A study fromHarvard and the Boston Attention and Learning Laboratory discovered people in their mid-40s – specifically, age 43 — tended to do the best on tests of concentration.

So, although your ability to process information may have waned, older adults win out when it comes to staying focused longer.

Vocabulary skills peak at 65

It turns out people's scores on multiple-choice vocabulary tests keep climbing into their mid 60s, according to the MIT study.

And you don't need to sit around reading the dictionary all day to make it happen – it happens naturally as we get older.

Psychological well-being peaks at about 82

As we grow old, we finally learn to appreciate life.

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In a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, scientists asked people to picture a 10-step ladder, with the best possible life on the top rung and the worst possible life on the bottom rung.

The oldest group they studied (82- to 85-year-olds) gave the highest average rung number, about 7.

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