Brain Training Supported by Research
Just for a moment, imagine being able to focus more on work tasks, or being able to stay emotionally present with friends and family members. Imagine experiencing an improvement in your intelligence, spatial/motor skills, mood, and overall well-being, as well as enhancement in different types of memory and attention. While you might think these are far beyond your reach, this is becoming a reality for countless individuals following a course of neurofeedback brain training.
Olympians, Major Athletes, and Surgeons Benefit from NeurofeedbackWe are seeing an increase in professional or competitive athletes, executives, musicians, and students seeking this type of brain training. This technology is often part of the training program for Olympians and professional athletes in the NFL and NBA. Neurofeedback helps athletes achieve a state of improved attention, focus, discipline, and aim, all within just a few weeks of treatments.
These results are not only available for athletes.
Research found that, after neurofeedback training, surgeons’ ability to focus, their critical decision-making, and their alertness during surgery were greatly improved when unexpected situations occurred.
Neurofeedback training is customized and targeted toward each individual’s brainwave activity. The most often used neurofeedback protocols for peak performance are:
o Hi-beta may reflect high anxiety or excitement. Alpha brainwaves are associated with peaceful, yet deliberate attention, while slower brainwaves, like theta, are often associated with brain fog and memory difficulties. The goal of this protocol is to improve the ability to make important decisions quickly and efficiently while also remaining calm and focused.
Sensori-Motor Rhythm (SMR) training: Enhancing SMR waves (Lo-Beta brainwaves, which are associated with an alert, attentive state coupled with calm or silent motor activities) while decreasing theta and hi-beta waves. o This type of training improves focus and attention, but also motoric precision, balance, and the ability to relax.
Some people struggle with stage fright, or extreme stress when called upon to present in front of groups of people. The Yerkes-Dodson Law suggests that a certain level of arousal is needed in order to achieve optimal performance. However, too much of it or too little of it may impair your performance completely.
Neurofeedback brain training was used in a study that showed how neurofeedback can be used to modify one’s arousal state in order to improve performance. The participants were engaged in a virtual reality aerial navigation task while their brain activity was measured using EEG.
They were also provided with a brain-computer interface (BCI) based neurofeedback signal that reflected their level of stress or arousal. While they were completing the aerial task, participants heard the sound of a low-rate, synthetic heartbeat, which got louder as their arousal level became higher. This process assisted them into a new awareness and insight into their arousal level in real time through these auditory cues. The participants were able to self-regulate and modify their arousal state, thereby resulting in improved task performance.
Regardless of your ambitions and dreams, your brain can benefit from neurofeedback. Solid research over the past several decades strongly supports the advantages to the process of brain training that can elevate your daily experience, assist you in achieving higher functioning, and remove the blocks that keep you from realizing your dreams.