Today, brain training is known as the process of mental exercises to stimulate the brain’s functions and trigger its cognitive development further. Puzzles, video games, logic games, and other thinking exercises are now used to help in brain training.
Right now, they are used by rehabilitation clinics to help mostly elderly patients improve on their mental abilities. If practiced consistently, authorities contend that these aids can improve memory, concentration and can reduce the effects of Alzheimer’s-related symptoms.
They are also known to improve visual judgment, and generally improve mental capabilities slowed down by aging.
Learning and changing
Before, scientists thought that the brain’s network is rigid and fixed, all because of aging. What we know today is that the brain can be molded and changed, even those in the elderly.
Brain training follows the concept of plasticity that says the brain is always learning and changing. New information changes the brain. This, in turn, makes brain training possible.
Commercial games and others
There are several good products on the market to increase brain functioning. Leading game companies have interactive games that feature mathematics, logic, reading and other challenges designed as “mental treadmills”.
There are other alternative routines, of course. You can do crossword puzzles, soduku, logic board games or other mental sports. The primary rule is simple – practice makes for better memory, visualization and reasoning skills.
Neurobics and other tips
The secret is to make connections to the new knowledge. Recalling past events refreshes the old sights and sounds (and even smells) and makes them new again.
In neurobics, the trick is to simply change daily routines. Sit in another place from your usual position at the table. Brush your teeth or comb your hair with your other hand, even if it feels awkward and hard to do the first time.
Like in physical exercises, practice is the key to eventual improvements of your mental abilities. Do a few of these exercises every day. You will soon discover that you can do more of them later.
Through all these, do not forget good nutrition and your regular physical exercises. Good health and good nutrition is a pre-requisite to improving your mental abilities.
Medical authorities are targeting brain training on the rehabilitation of our three key mental skills – memory, visualization and reasoning.
Good memory is simply making mental connections. The more connections you have of something, the more likely you can remember it. How does the word sound? What thoughts does it bring to mind?
Visualization gives a good mental workout. Pick a memory and recall everything you can about it – the smells, the colors, the time of day, the people around, etc.
Think what and how you felt then – happy, sad, elated? Try to recall everything. If it was a beach vacation, can you still remember the smell of the sea, the feel of the breeze, the sound of the waves?
Spend around 15 minutes visualizing. Repeat everyday with a different memory.
Reasoning is one of the most important functions of the brain. One very good way of practicing would be asking the question “Why?”
Simply thinking the possible answers to questions on things that interest you will force your brain to use logic and intuition. Brain training is actually not an ordeal at all like most people imagine.