Brain “Boot Camp” Makes You Smarter

  by  |  December 31st, 2008  |  Published in All, Brain & Psychology, Featured, Weird Science


 |  Stumble |  Share on Facebook |  Tweet This | 

Is getting more exercise among your New Year’s resolutions? What about some training for your brain? Researchers have put people through a series of brain exercises—a brain boot camp—and found that, just like exercise for your body, exercise for your brain pays off.

[If you cannot see the flash video below, you can click here for a high quality mp4 video.]

Interviewees: Susanne Jaeggi and Martin Buschkuehl, University of Michigan
-Produced by Jack Penland– Edited by James Eagan
Copyright © ScienCentral, Inc.

Train Your Brain

The idea of giving your brain a workout isn’t a new one, but the stumbling block has been to find a way to train your brain that actually shows improvement in other, unrelated mental tasks.

Susanne Jaeggi and Martin Buschkuehl, post-doctoral fellows at the University of Michigan, have been putting volunteers through an intense computer-based mental workout that is showing promise.

Jaeggi says they gave the volunteers basic intelligence tests both before and after the training and found that, “After training … people actually got smarter in these (intelligence) tests.”

Get Smart

She says, “In other training programs that are on the market, people get (better at a) particular task, so they form very task-specific strategies." However, she adds, “Their ability does not transfer to domains other than the training task, itself.”

Also on ScienCentral

Live Learning 8.07.03
Have you ever wondered how babies learn to talk?
It’s more than just hearing people around them.

Coffee Break Brain 6.23.06
Here’s a reason to tell your boss to, “give you a break.”
Scientists are learning breaks from activities may help your memory.

Smart Mice 6.07.07
They didn’t mean to, but brain scientists created smarter
mice when they genetically altered the mice to lack a certain brain protein.

For example, she says, people have been able to train themselves to remember long sequences of numbers, but if the sequence changes to letters or shapes, people have to start over and re-train with the new material.

“We sat people in front of computer screens and they had to do a very complicated task,” explains Jaeggi. She says, “What people saw was squares coming up one after another… and they had to remember the order in which the squares were appearing.”

Writing in the “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,” they said volunteers saw a series of squares and than had to press a button whenever a square matched a previously viewed square seen anywhere from one to nine squares back. At the same time people heard letters and had to press another button when the letters matched. As people get better, participants had to remember squares or letters that were further back in the sequence, making the task even more difficult.

Buschkuehl says in the post training tests the volunteers “solved 40 percent more problems (than) were presented to them than before the training.”
Jordan Harris is one of the people who volunteered to enter brain boot camp. He’s found a practical payoff, noting, “I used to lose jackets and clothes all the time, and I guess I haven’t had that problem recently.”

Their program is available at:
http://www.apn.psy.unibe.ch/lenya/apn/live/anwendung/braintwister-e.html

However, the researchers say people might get a similar effect by challenging themselves to try new things such as learning a language or a musical instrument or learning to do old tasks in new ways.

And just like physical exercise, they believe that the impact of these “mental gymnastics” is not permanent. Says Buschkuehl, “You have to constantly train in order to keep up a good performance.” However, they are doing further research to make sure.

Jaeggi says the analogy to physical exercise is a fair one, explaining that, “If you go jogging every day, you kind of train your very basic cardiovascular system.” She notes the improved cardiovascular system then makes things from walking stairs to bicycling easier. Of our brain, Jaeggi says, “Our basic working memory capacity that we exercise then tends to spread out in all other areas that rely on this working memory capacity.”

In other words, just like the improved cardiovascular system, the improved working memory results in improved performance in more than just the training program.
The researchers say this program is not just for smart people. Jaeggi says, “Our training actually works even better for the ones that start at the lower levels (on standard intelligence tests).”

The program is also useful for older adults. She noted the oldest volunteer was 90 years old, “so people can actually train throughout their life span.”

They’re now looking at the effectiveness of their training with children, including those with learning disabilities or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

People wishing to volunteer for their Brain Boot Camp can contact them at mcastltrainers@gmail.com.

This research was published April 28, 2008, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and supported by grants from The Swiss National Science Foundation, National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Mental Health.

Elsewhere on the Web:


Download the Researcher’s Training Program

The Franklin Institute-The Human Brain

Neuroscience for Kids—Brain Fitness


 |  Stumble |  Share on Facebook |  Tweet This | 


Responses

  1. curtis says:

    January 1st, 2009 at 3:30 am (#)

    That is super interesting. I want to try that program now.

  2. Martin Walker says:

    January 1st, 2009 at 8:12 am (#)

    My company has also published a faithful version of the n-back training method. It can be found at http://www.mindsparke.com. It’s somewhat less expensive in $US.

    Martin

  3. Brian says:

    January 2nd, 2009 at 2:52 pm (#)

    You can do this on your iPhone with “IQ boost”

    (iTunes link) http://itunes.com/apps/iqboost

    IQ boost implements the methods used in this study. It also has an excellent tutorial and extensive stats to track your progress.

  4. Memory Exercises says:

    April 3rd, 2009 at 7:25 am (#)

    Great post.
    I’ve been to the site for the program but its not there; whats happening?

    Stephen Kember

  5. Memory Exercises says:

    April 3rd, 2009 at 10:40 am (#)

    Great post. For those that are interested I’ve just left another blog [which I have nothing to do with] but where there are 20 really intersting scientific interviewswith members of the medical fraternity that build on whats here; have a look at: http://www.sharpbrains.com/resources/neuroscience-interview-series/

    Stephen

  6. Memory Exercises says:

    April 17th, 2009 at 3:48 am (#)

    The point about persistance is really important and why for many memory exercises are not seen as working its because people stop doing them before they have had a chance to make an impact.

  7. Hayden Bennett says:

    May 23rd, 2010 at 12:03 pm (#)

    i enjoy camping specially in dense wooded tropical forests. camping is a fun way to spend time with your friends too.’:,

  8. John says:

    June 15th, 2010 at 9:17 am (#)

    These two researchers are my heroes, as they have allowed me to make sense of my own life. I find their work to be worthy of a Noble prize.

  9. Hunter Reed says:

    July 12th, 2010 at 8:36 pm (#)

    camping outdoors is one of my favorite, it is quite relaxing to be with friends.’~*

  10. dan says:

    August 1st, 2010 at 10:08 pm (#)

    I do love camping!I find it exciting and adventurous activity.But I don’t have an idea that there is this what you called “brain boot camp game”. I guess this is great too.Gonna have to try this next time.

  11. remodeling brighton, mi says:

    July 8th, 2011 at 12:39 pm (#)

    A formidable share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing just a little analysis on this. And he in fact purchased me breakfast as a result of I discovered it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the deal with! However yeah Thnkx for spending the time to debate this, I really feel strongly about it and love reading extra on this topic. If potential, as you change into experience, would you mind updating your blog with more details? It is highly helpful for me. Large thumb up for this weblog submit!

  12. mobile landing page says:

    July 15th, 2011 at 1:26 pm (#)

    I’d need to test with you here. Which isn’t one thing I usually do! I take pleasure in reading a post that will make folks think. Additionally, thanks for allowing me to remark!

  13. tennis lessons brighton, mi says:

    July 15th, 2011 at 2:28 pm (#)

    I’d need to verify with you here. Which isn’t something I usually do! I get pleasure from studying a publish that can make folks think. Also, thanks for allowing me to comment!

  14. Adolfo Greenwaldt says:

    September 21st, 2011 at 11:30 pm (#)

    My extended internet search has finally been paid with incredibly good strategies to talk about with my pals.

  15. wine delivery brooklyn says:

    September 22nd, 2011 at 12:37 am (#)

    Great goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just extremely wonderful. I actually like what you’ve acquired here, certainly like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still care for to keep it smart. I can not wait to read far more from you. This is actually a terrific site. All the best, wine delivery brooklyn

  16. BLACKBUSH CAR AUCTIONS says:

    September 27th, 2011 at 12:18 am (#)

    Why I get this ? when using Firefox then when I will be using Web browser shows what I am supposed to get, (Wed) ,because text. If you cannot see what I place down it is a small box with all the numbers 26 and 20 inside it.. Can there be a treatment for my problem?. Thanks ahead of time..

  17. Leonida Whitlatch says:

    October 9th, 2011 at 7:04 pm (#)

    Hey this is a great post . Can I use a portion of it on my site ? I would obviously link back to your page so people could view the complete post if they wanted to. Thanks either way.

  18. Cedric Freed says:

    November 3rd, 2011 at 1:35 pm (#)

    Hello, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you reduce it, any plugin or anything you can advise? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any assistance is very much appreciated.

  19. pink mercurial vapor superfly 2 says:

    November 8th, 2011 at 5:17 am (#)

    I’d need to check with you here. Which is not something I often do! I get pleasure from studying a publish that may make folks think. Additionally, thanks for allowing me to remark!

  20. トリーバーチ 靴 says:

    November 15th, 2011 at 11:17 pm (#)

    Very usefull blog. i will follow this blog. keep up the good work.

  21. Shirley Grigalonis says:

    November 17th, 2011 at 10:40 am (#)

    Some truly grand work on behalf of the owner of this web site , absolutely outstanding subject matter.

  22. forex cash bonus says:

    December 6th, 2011 at 5:52 am (#)

    The November cash rate rise was the Reserve’s seventh since October 2009 when it

  23. Beverly Carroll says:

    December 18th, 2011 at 6:22 am (#)

    My husband loves to write and he love sports?He needs a part time job so he was wonder if he can get paid doing what he love. How can he get paid blogging or writing about sports?. Thanks,He love and know allot about soccer or futball,and american football..

  24. Moncler Everest says:

    December 24th, 2011 at 3:38 am (#)

    With the whole thing that seems to be developing within this specific subject material, a significant percentage of viewpoints are quite refreshing. However, I beg your pardon, but I do not subscribe to your entire suggestion, all be it exhilarating none the less. It would seem to me that your comments are not completely rationalized and in reality you are generally your self not even entirely certain of your point. In any event I did enjoy examining it.

  25. Why Motorists That Compare Car Breakdown Cover Are Better Off in the Long Term says:

    January 5th, 2012 at 1:32 am (#)

    That is very attention-grabbing, You’re a very skilled blogger. I’ve joined your feed and look forward to in the hunt for extra of your fantastic post. Additionally, I have shared your site in my social networks

  26. Eli Gaston says:

    January 11th, 2012 at 4:34 pm (#)

    That is really interesting, You are an excessively skilled blogger. I’ve joined your feed and look ahead to in quest of extra of your wonderful post. Additionally, I have shared your site in my social networks!

  27. Linette Ferracioli says:

    February 5th, 2012 at 7:31 pm (#)

    I’m typically to blogging and i actually respect your content. The article has actually peaks my interest. I’m going to bookmark your web site and preserve checking for brand spanking new information.

  28. Gregory Agans says:

    March 22nd, 2012 at 10:28 am (#)

    I conceive other website proprietors should take this site as an model, very clean and wonderful user friendly design and style .

  29. market research survey says:

    March 30th, 2012 at 8:15 am (#)

    You’ve got a great blog here! would you like to create some invite posts on my site?

  30. Else Sohn says:

    April 2nd, 2012 at 8:12 am (#)

    Simply wanna input on few general things, The website layout is perfect, the written content is real fantastic : D.

  31. Terrell Purzycki says:

    April 4th, 2012 at 8:47 am (#)

    Some really interesting points you have written.Helped me a lot, just what I was searching for : D.

  32. bijuterii magnetice says:

    April 24th, 2012 at 8:10 am (#)

    Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this blog. It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between usability and visual appeal. I must say you’ve done a superb job with this. Also, the blog loads super fast for me on Opera. Outstanding Blog!

  33. mortgage jobs says:

    April 26th, 2012 at 1:21 am (#)

    Hi there! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone 3gs! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the fantastic work!

  34. holy chicken says:

    June 11th, 2012 at 7:36 pm (#)

    Hi there, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam feedback? If so how do you stop it, any plugin or anything you can advise? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any support is very much appreciated.

  35. auto says:

    June 18th, 2012 at 9:25 am (#)

    Hello! Quick question that’s totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when viewing from my iphone 4. I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to fix this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share. Thanks!

  36. Joesph Hinke says:

    June 30th, 2012 at 6:48 pm (#)

    I just want to tell you that I am just beginner to blogging and site-building and truly liked this web page. Most likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You actually have very good well written articles. Many thanks for revealing your webpage.

  37. marietta fence company says:

    July 13th, 2012 at 8:26 pm (#)

    I simply couldn’t go away your website before suggesting that I actually enjoyed the usual information an individual provide on your guests? Is gonna be again regularly to investigate cross-check new posts

  38. Becki Haan says:

    July 16th, 2012 at 6:18 pm (#)

    what are the benefits of green tea, I’m inspired, I have to say. Actually hardly ever do I come upon a weblog that’s both educative and unique, and let me let you know, you have got hit the nail at the head. Your idea is excellent; the difficulty is something that no longer enough people are speaking intelligently about. I’m very happy that I stumbled throughout this in my seek for one thing relating to this.

  39. Ara Deley says:

    July 20th, 2012 at 1:28 am (#)

    In these days of austerity along with relative anxiety about getting debt, a lot of people balk resistant to the idea of employing a credit card in order to make purchase of merchandise or maybe pay for a holiday, preferring, instead to rely on the actual tried plus trusted means of making settlement – cash. However, if you possess the cash available to make the purchase completely, then, paradoxically, that is the best time for you to use the credit cards for several motives.

  40. Josue Poyer says:

    July 24th, 2012 at 4:40 pm (#)

    web designer in kent for as little as £99 including free hosting!

  41. Cyrus Contrell says:

    July 26th, 2012 at 11:08 am (#)

    Some genuinely superb information, Gladiolus I found this.

  42. Jan Rains says:

    July 28th, 2012 at 3:21 am (#)

    Top-notch post it really is surely. My friend has been awaiting for this content.

  43. Neta Gantvoort says:

    August 1st, 2012 at 9:24 am (#)

    Outstanding post, you have pointed out some superb points , I as well believe this s a very wonderful website.

  44. Learn More Here says:

    August 7th, 2012 at 2:57 pm (#)

    Nice post. I was checking constantly this weblog and I am impressed! Really helpful info specially the last part I care for such information much. I was seeking this certain information for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  45. Tula Brieno says:

    September 2nd, 2012 at 4:57 am (#)

    Great post however I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this topic? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Many thanks!

  46. Carson Stavsvick says:

    September 9th, 2012 at 7:45 am (#)

    Jellified was anxiously dabbed given that dept. with transporation through the help of any apple mackintosh business within the cheek in addition to a dating partners smallish dots through the help of cheekbone as well as hand-applied through the help of small designer purses meant for being able to help intermix your pet sometimes correct with cheeks meant for being able to help hairline.

  47. Yolanda Sarao says:

    September 20th, 2012 at 9:45 pm (#)

    Radarlock’s styling is similar to the current Radar — which will remain in the lineup — but a clever hinge mechanism makes for easier lens changes and according to Oakley, http://hioakley.ucoz.com/. even less lens distortion than before for more accurate optical performance.

  48. Genaro Winn says:

    November 9th, 2012 at 1:50 am (#)

    I must express my love for your kind-heartedness giving support to men and women that have the need for help with this particular niche. Your special commitment to getting the message throughout appeared to be surprisingly useful and have continually made girls just like me to attain their aims. Your insightful publication means much to me and especially to my fellow workers. Best wishes; from each one of us.

  49. my link says:

    December 13th, 2012 at 5:05 pm (#)

    Spot on with this write-up, I actually suppose this website needs way more consideration. I’ll in all probability be again to read way more, thanks for that info.

  50. it support job description template says:

    February 11th, 2013 at 2:01 pm (#)

    Nice.

  51. Chas Scarpello says:

    April 21st, 2013 at 7:39 pm (#)

    Good information. Lucky me I discovered your blog by chance (stumbleupon). I’ve book marked it for later!

  52. Reda Swafford says:

    April 27th, 2013 at 2:18 am (#)

    The worlds hottest realtime 3D adult video games and online porn simulations.

  53. catholic high school says:

    May 1st, 2013 at 12:45 pm (#)

    It’s very easy to find out any matter on net as compared to textbooks, as I found this post at this site.

  54. NFS Boost Hack says:

    May 4th, 2013 at 2:01 am (#)

    Hello! I could have sworn I’ve visited this website before but after going through some of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Regardless, I’m definitely delighted I came across it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back often!

  55. Jonas Rauf says:

    May 6th, 2013 at 8:09 pm (#)

    Some really nice and useful info on this website , also I think the pattern contains fantastic features.

  56. instrumentals says:

    May 11th, 2013 at 6:19 am (#)

    You made a number of nice points there. I did a search on the subject and found nearly all folks will go along with with your blog.

  57. nail fungus soak says:

    June 16th, 2013 at 7:59 am (#)

    Thanks for the good blog. It was extremely helpful for me.
    Keep sharing such ideas in the future as well.
    This was in fact what I was trying to find, and I’m glad I got here! Thank you for sharing the such information with us.

    Feel free to visit my web page: nail fungus soak

  58. free angry birds online says:

    June 20th, 2013 at 9:27 pm (#)

    I admire your work, regards for all the informative blog posts.

  59. gry online dla dzieci spiderman says:

    June 26th, 2013 at 1:26 am (#)

    I really like foregathering useful information , this post has got me even more info! .

  60. blue faced rolex says:

    July 4th, 2013 at 9:19 pm (#)

    These high peculiarity Rolex watches are given antecedence while selecting trendy watches. Rolex watches for men are equally of the people as of Rolex watches for women as they suffice the needs of both of them. One useful thing about Rolex watches is that having diversity in their formation. While manufacturing Rolex gang take the shut up attention of the latest trends and designs and lastly come up with exclusive pieces that mate up the latest trends.

  61. amarandee j17 says:

    July 17th, 2013 at 7:39 am (#)

    This is an exceptional post, and I can agree with what was written here. I will be back to check out more of your articles soon. Thanks!

  62. Links of London UK Online says:

    July 23rd, 2013 at 4:46 am (#)

    “From 2011 to 2011, the Chinese tourists 4 into a year

  63. SEO says:

    March 22nd, 2014 at 5:06 am (#)

    Hello! I simply wish to give an enormous thumbs up for the good data you have got here on this post.
    I will be coming back to your weblog for extra soon.

    Feel free to surf to my web site :: SEO

  64. http://blogz.gr/content/seo-reseller-program-saved-your-business says:

    March 30th, 2014 at 9:37 pm (#)

    Hiya! I simply want to give an enormous thumbs up for the good data
    you

  65. innerawakeningstherapy.com says:

    April 7th, 2014 at 8:32 pm (#)

    Excellent excited synthetic attention meant for detail and can
    anticipate complications just before they will happen.

    Take a look at my web site … SEO (innerawakeningstherapy.com)

  66. Florida says:

    April 8th, 2014 at 1:37 pm (#)

    My web page 風扇 (Florida)

  67. Aubrey says:

    April 15th, 2014 at 9:48 am (#)

    Wonderful article! This is the type of info that are supposed to be shared across the web.
    Disgrace on the search engines for no longer positioning this publish higher!
    Come on over and consult with my site . Thanks =)

  68. download for no good reason says:

    April 23rd, 2014 at 3:14 am (#)

    Everyone loves what you guys are usually up too. This sort of clever work and coverage!
    Keep up the wonderful works guys I’ve included you
    guys to blogroll.

    Check out my web site … download for no good reason

  69. adiphene diet pills says:

    May 22nd, 2014 at 9:57 am (#)

    This basically suggests that you will be able to
    eat anything that you want without the worry of gaining
    weight. So, I know you are going to ask in desperation, is
    there any diet pill that works fast and yet doesn’t need any prescription to buy it.
    For your self-guidance, are able to go through top quality weight loss product reviews and are allowed
    to know upon the most-sought after available inside the market from the reputed
    pharmaceutical brands.

    Take a look at my weblog :: adiphene diet pills

  70. норд форекс says:

    May 29th, 2014 at 1:20 am (#)

    Я считаю, что Вы не правы. Я уверен.

    Предлагаю это обсудить.

    Пишите мне в PM, поговорим.

    Посетите мою страничку: норд форекс

  71. gratsocial.com says:

    June 11th, 2014 at 11:21 pm (#)

    hello there and thank you for your info – I’ve definitely picked up anything new from
    right here. I did however expertise some technical points using this web site, as
    I experienced to reload the web site a lot of
    times previous to I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if
    your web host is OK? Not that I’m complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will often affect your placement in google and could damage your high-quality score if advertising and marketing with Adwords.
    Anyway I’m adding this RSS to my e-mail and could look out for a lot more
    of your respective fascinating content. Make sure you update this again very soon.

    Visit my webpage; social landings (gratsocial.com)

  72. mobile games says:

    June 12th, 2014 at 5:02 am (#)

    If some one desires to be updated with most recent technologies afterward
    he must be pay a quick visit this web site and be up to
    date daily.

  73. pinterest says:

    October 12th, 2014 at 6:04 am (#)

    Whether you’re a business or personal brand, you should definitely pay attention to Pinterest.
    Founded in March 2010, Pinterest has become the fastest-growing social media site on the web, gaining
    145% more users since January 2012 alone. It does mean figuring
    out where your target audience is engaging (social networking sites) and developing
    a strategy for how you’re going to reach them.

  74. coat domain new says:

    October 13th, 2014 at 7:49 am (#)

    Good site you have got here.. It’s difficult to find good quality writing like yours nowadays.

    I seriously appreciate people like you! Take care!!

  75. Kristian says:

    December 9th, 2014 at 6:10 pm (#)

    I have been exploring for a little bit for any high-quality articles or
    weblog posts on this sort of area . Exploring
    in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this website.
    Studying this information So i am satisfied to show that I’ve an incredibly excellent uncanny
    feeling I came upon just what I needed. I such a lot without a doubt will make certain to don?t omit
    this site and provides it a glance regularly.

    web page, Kristian,

  76. Velva says:

    February 20th, 2015 at 4:11 pm (#)

    Link exchange is nothing else but it is just placing the
    other person’s weblog link on your page at suitable
    place and other person will also do same for you.

  77. parfümler says:

    May 18th, 2017 at 9:42 am (#)

    cheap Browns jerseys china Sizes Online

Leave a Response


Archives


Clicky Web Analytics