Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Great news: The New York Times acknowledges that (as clearly documented for 10+ years) Exercise and Brain Training are BOTH crucial for Lifelong Brain Fitness

Exer­cise May Enhance the Effects of Brain Train­ing (The New York Times):

..an inter­est­ing new study pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Cog­ni­tive Neu­ro­science sug­gests that com­bin­ing intense exer­cise and brain train­ing might, over time, ampli­fy the ben­e­fits of both for the brain, even in peo­ple whose minds already are work­ing well…scientists at McMas­ter Uni­ver­si­ty in Hamil­ton, Ontario, began to won­der recent­ly whether brain train­ing and exer­cise train­ing might be com­ple­men­tary, with exer­cise prompt­ing the cre­ation of baby neu­rons that brain train­ing would then strengthen…the study’s find­ings sug­gest that exer­cis­ing both our bod­ies and minds may pro­vide the great­est boost to our mem­o­ries…” Read the rest of this entry »

Brain Training: It Works, and It Doesn’t Work

The IMPACT study which we report­ed on in Decem­ber 2007, fund­ed by Posit Sci­ence, con­duct­ed by the Mayo Clin­ic and USC Davis, has just announced pub­li­ca­tion at the Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Geri­atrics Soci­ety. Ref­er­ence:

- Smith et al. A Cog­ni­tive Train­ing Pro­gram Designed Based on Prin­ci­ples of Brain Plas­tic­i­ty: Results from the Improve­ment in Mem­o­ry with Plas­tic­i­ty-based Adap­tive Cog­ni­tive Train­ing Study. Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Geri­atrics Soci­ety, April 2009.

Com­put­er Exer­cis­es Improve Mem­o­ry And Atten­tion, Study Sug­gests (Sci­ence Dai­ly)

- “The Improve­ment in Mem­o­ry with Plas­tic­i­ty-based Adap­tive Cog­ni­tive Train­ing (IMPACT) study was fund­ed by the Posit Sci­ence Cor­po­ra­tion, which owns the rights to the Brain Fit­ness Pro­gram, test­ed in the study.”

- “Of the 487 healthy adults over the age of 65 who par­tic­i­pat­ed in a ran­dom­ized con­trolled tri­al, half used the Brain Fit­ness Pro­gram for 40 hours over the course of eight weeks. The Brain Fit­ness Pro­gram con­sists of six audio exer­cis­es done on a com­put­er, and is intend­ed to “retrain the brain to dis­crim­i­nate fine dis­tinc­tions in sound, and do it in a way that keeps the user engaged,” Zelin­s­ki explained.” The oth­er half of par­tic­i­pants spent an equal amount of time learn­ing from edu­ca­tion­al DVDs fol­lowed by quizzes.

Com­ment: this is a very inter­est­ing study, in that it shows both that cog­ni­tive train­ing works, and that it doesn’t work.

What do I mean? Read the rest of this entry »

Mysteries of Brain and Mind

Sev­er­al recent NYT arti­cles focus on sev­er­al fas­ci­nat­ing fron­tiers of brain sci­ence. We know much more about brain and mind than only 20 years ago, yet expo­nen­tial­ly less than 20 years from now.

A few wor­thy explo­rations on mind­ful­ness, per­cep­tu­al capac­i­ties, and the pow­er of place­bo: Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Brain Fitness Seminars

Here you are have the bi-month­ly update with our 10 most Pop­u­lar blog posts. (Also, remem­ber that you can sub­scribe to receive our RSS feed, or to our newslet­ter, at the top of this page, if you want to receive this digest by email).Crossword Puzzles Brain fitness

We hope you have some time to share with us today. Just came back from a superb event on Brain Health Across the Lifespan…and many stim­u­lat­ing things are hap­pen­ing in the world of brain fit­ness.

News and Events

Exer­cise your brain in the Cog­ni­tive Age: The New York Times pub­lished two thought-pro­vok­ing arti­cles on brain and cog­ni­tive fit­ness, one of them fea­tur­ing Sharp­Brains.

Read the rest of this entry »

DriveFit (CogniFit); Brain Fitness Program for Driving

Dri­ving as Next Brain Fit­ness Application? 

Last month, at the MIT/ Smart­Sil­vers event where we pre­sent­ed our Brain Fit­ness Mar­ket Report, we dis­cussed what spe­cif­ic appli­ca­tions, beyond the cur­rent empha­sis on healthy Two In One Taskaging, might take com­put­er­ized cog­ni­tive train­ing to a new level.  

Assess­ing and improv­ing dri­ving skills would be a top can­di­date, giv­en both the well-defined nature of the need and the appear­ance of pro­grams with grow­ing evi­dence (both sci­en­tif­ic and real-world) behind.

The New York Times Asks… 

Along these lines, the New York Times just published this arti­cle: Are You a Good Dri­ver? Here’s How to Find Out. A few quotes:

- “COULD a video game make you a bet­ter dri­ver? More impor­tant, could com­put­er soft­ware pre­vent teenagers from mak­ing fatal mis­takes or even weed out old­er dri­vers whose debil­i­ties make them crash-prone?”

Read the rest of this entry »

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

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