Advanced Mental Training to Maximise your Success

Brain training the military

The future of military might may not just be in bigger and better hardware of warfare, but in fitter and faster brains of military personnel.

The Brain Training Company is at the cutting edge of mental fitness training.  What was seen ten years ago as kooky executive training or fringe athletic training to achieve the mental edge, may now become a mainstream component of military training.

It is demonstrably possible to improve someone’s mental fitness; be that to increase IQ, manage stress better, enhance levels of focus and concentration when under pressure, or learning information at a greatly increased speed.  The foundation of this at The Brain Training Company is brainwave training.  Developing the ability to consciously control brainwave activity.  From this there are knock on benefits, such as greater neural connectivity and increased blood flow to the brain.

For military personnel this is a critical step in improving personal performancefaster and better decision making when under pressure.

This article from Wired.com looks at this topic:

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Synchronized Brain Waves Focus Our Attention

For many years now, the courses of The Brain Training Company have promoted the importance of cerebral balance and synchrony between the two hemispheres.  Clients have gone on to show enhanced personal performance; be that in the classroom, boardroom or in sport.  This is an interesting article looking at the significance of synchronized brainwave activity and its role in mental focus and attention.

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USA National Sporting Clays Champion: Gebben Miles

Hot off the Press:

Congratulations to Gebben Miles, who has just become the 2009 USA National Sporting Clays Champion.  It was a tight finish going to a shoot-off.  However Gebben maintained his mental focus and concentration to take the title.

Apart from being such a talented shooter, Gebben will be a wonderful ambassador for shotgun sports as the 2009 National Champion.

“Henry, I really appreciate everything you’ve done for me and the level of care you have. You are an awesome person and thank you for being a part of my National Championship!!”

“Henry helped me develop a powerful pre-shot mental routine. He has been like a dependable friend looking after my mental game. I learnt how to control my mental states for strong focus and concentration, regardless of the pressure.”

– Gebben Miles. USA National Champion 2009

Effect of brainwaves on movement and peak performance

This scientific study proves and reinforces one of the training objectives in our Peak Performance for Sport training course:- the importance of being able to control beta brainwave production.  Note especially the sentence I have highlighted and put in bold text.

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Study highlights effect of brain waves on human behaviour

Boosting a certain type of brain wave can slow people’s movements, UK researchers have discovered. The findings, published online by the journal Current Biology, offer the first direct evidence that brain waves can influence behaviour in otherwise healthy individuals. They could also lead to the development of new drugs for medical conditions characterised by either uncontrolled or slowed movements.

Different types of brain wave have different frequencies and different locations. In this study, the researchers investigated beta waves, which have a frequency of around 20 Hertz (Hz). Earlier studies have shown that beta waves are linked to sustained muscle activity, such as that employed when holding a book. Beta activity drops just before people initiate movement.

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Right Brain vs. Left Brain

Last week I received an email with a so-called brain test. The sender wanted to know why the brain reacted in the way described in the test. Attached to the email was a computer generated back and white image of a female dancer.

By coincidence, I came across the same image in an online news article today, so perhaps this is now going round the internet. Have a look at the image for yourself here.

When you first look at the image, which way round did the dance appear to be turning? Are you able to get it to change direction? With a few minutes practice you should be able to control the direction she turns.

But how does this effect occur? Is it really a right vs. left brain issue, as suggested in the article? Unfortunately no sources for their claim on this are mentioned.

My opinion is that it is more to do with how to brain interprets visual input, rather than left / right brain. With this image it is a flat two tone picture. There is little reference point of perspective for the brain to use.

If you create your own reference point in your imagination, such as thinking whether the girls hair is towards you or away from you as she turns. The same can be done with her foot and if it is towards you or away from you. As there is not possible to know this, by using your imagination and telling your brain this is what you see, your brain will create the image and perception to what you believe in this moment. A classic optical illusion.

In our training courses we measure brainwave activity to compare left hemisphere brainwave activity with the right hemisphere. It is possible to measure the amplitude of activity and thus which side is more active. Where optimal levels of performance are achieved, be that in a sport or other activity, a balance of brainwave activity is seen. Conversely, we often notice that those who struggle to perform well, especially in academic skills, that they have a significant imbalance of brainwave activity.

There are other images, like this dancer, where your brain has to fill in the gaps of information it cannot see. Have you seen the drawing of the cube and you have to work out if the corner is towards you or away from you? You can see that and other illusions here.

The brain is a very clever piece of kit. If it is not sure as to what it sees, it creates that impression. This might include the child’s imagination that they see the shape of monsters in their bedroom, when it is just how the moonlight falls on a pile of clothes.

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