Exercise. There's increasing evidence that physical activity is good for the brain as well as the heart, Arnold says. U.S. News has reported on research that linked aerobic exercise to kids' achievement in math and reading. Arnold's team is working on a pilot study to find out whether exercises that train the cerebellum, such as running in place or navigating around cones, are more beneficial for children with reading problems and ADHD than an exercise program that involves aerobics. Hallowell puts exercise No. 2 on his list of so-called alternative treatments for ADHD, behind creating a positive, loving environment at home and above getting enough sleep.