What happens during training?
Neurofitness training relies on an underlying principle called neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity refers to how neurons change and the brain reorganizes its networks in response to learning new skills and the new experiences we have in our lives.
The brain consists of neurons and glial cells which are interconnected, and learning may happen through changing of the strength of the connections between them, by adding or removing connections, or by adding new cells though neurogenesis.
Neurofitness accelerates this adaptive learning process by providing feedback at precisely the moment when the brain is doing something right. Feedback is offerred via an audible or video cue acting like an electronic coach with amazing insight into your brain's activity.
What does brain-computer interface training do?
Brain-Computer interface training (Neurofeedback) is a technique that allows the brain to regulate itself in order to maintain a stable state of relaxed, focused attention, alertness, and emotional control. It is comfortable, and involves no medication or invasive procedures. Research has shown that, for many individuals, it can be a viable alternative or adjunct to medication.
What will you experience during training?
During neurofeedback training, the client sits in a comfortable chair with small electronic sensors attached to his or her scalp and ears, with the option of looking at a computer screen to see visual results of their training. The sensors allow a computer to monitor the client's brain wave patterns per a protocol based on their brain map and other performance parameters.
The client is rewarded for generating brain wave patterns that increase his or her attention, alertness, and emotional control for example. Rewards may take the form of a simple auditory cueing beep or can be as complex as playing computer games, which he or she learns to control with their brain waves.
The computer awards points when the desired brain wave patterns are generated. The brain learns from this feedback and adjusts accordingly, strengthening its ability to achieve and maintain this state. Over time, the brain becomes better able to self-regulate and achieve this state on its own.
Brain performance improvement
Peak Neurofitness training results are demonstrated in a number of ways. Client feedback and testimonials provide data regarding quality of life and academic, executive, or athletic impovements we see as training progresses.
Clients establish training goals and metrics to track and evaluate progress. Symptom tracking provides valuable information about training effectiveness.
We use repeat brain maps to track changes in the electrophysiology. Periodicllay, we remap our clients and compare new maps to previous maps to understand how well the training is working and how to tweak for further improvements to meet client goals.
In this client pre/post assessment, you can see that both hemispheres have substantially less slow waves frontally as well as posteriorly.
The client reports greater clarity of thought and ability to control emotions and impulsivity (frontal effect). Also less moodiness and an easier time relaxing (posterior effect). Memory improvements were made as well.
This is a simplified description of the complex changes that happen relative to improvements. The brain is clearly changing in other ways as well including inter-hemispheric communication, dominant frequency, and assymmetry (left to right distribution patterns) of brainwaves. These changes can be evaluated with other features of the brain mapping analysis. We also use repeat tests of attention, reaction time, and memory to evaluate progress.
Brainwaves are grouped and classified according to frequency, that is the number of cycles per second measured in hertz (Hz). Your brain is making a mixture of waves at any point in time. No brain wave is good or bad, it’s just whether you are making the right mix of brainwaves for the task at hand.
Delta 1-4 Hz
Slow brainwaves produced mostly in sleep, but are also present to varying degrees throughout normal brains when awake. May play a role in sequencing and binding the other frequencies.
Theta 4-7 Hz
Slightly faster slow waves that are often associated with twilight states between sleep and wakefulness. When you’re waking up in the morning and you’re not quite fully awake yet, but also not asleep, that’s theta. Has a role in memory consolidation.
Alpha 8-12 Hz
An idling rhythm often referred to as calm / alert. Can be associated with relaxation, calming down, self-soothing, and a “flow” state or meditation. Can be likened to the “ready position” in volleyball or neutral in a car.
SMR or Lobeta 12-15 Hz
The first brainwave discovered. A stabilizing and calming rhythm. Feels a little more alert than alpha.
Beta 15-20 Hz
Fast and active brainwave associated with focus and concentration. When excessive can contribute to anxiety and OCD. Think about driving down a busy freeway in a snowstorm, focus can be exaggerated to the point of possible anxiety.
Hi Beta 20-30 Hz
Faster beta, often associated with anxiety. Overlaps the electrical signal of tense muscles.
Gamma 40 Hz and above
Produced by the Tibetan Buddhist monks when meditating. A peak performance brainwave, has been described as caffeine and clarity and feeling of well-being and oneness with nature. Very much a highly productive flow state.