Cultivation changes the surface soil. Yes, it loosens up the soil-but only temporarily. Actually, cultivation packs the soil tighter. That cuts down the large air spaces in your soil and makes it harder for water to penetrate it.
Ulrich, Rudoplh and Anderson, Marvin
"Cultivation Breaks Down Tilth,"
Iowa Farm Science: Vol. 4
, Article 6.
Available at: https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/farmscience/vol4/iss3/6