Explanation: How Brain Training Can Make You Significantly Smarter
Who wouldn’t like to be smarter? Neuroscientists once believed that this was impossible — the accepted truth was that you were born with a set level of intelligence, and that was that. Fortunately, we now know better. Empowering information about the brain’s ability to change in response to the right challenges and stimuli have come to light.
Just this year, three articles that showed the benefits of cognitive training with Lumosity—the online leader in brain training—were published in peer-reviewed scientific journals. These articles demonstrate that Lumosity training can engage your innate neuroplasticity and help make you smarter.
In the first article from Brain Injury journal by Dr. Shelli Kesler, a professor at the Stanford School of Medicine, cancer survivors used Lumosity’s training program to help them recover from cancer-related cognitive problems. Participants showed significantly improved performance on tests of processing speed, cognitive flexibility, and memory—all categories available for brain training on Lumosity.com. In addition, Dr. Kesler used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to visually demonstrate enhanced activation in the prefrontal cortex of participants’ brains.
In a second article by Dr. Kesler’s group, researchers used a special Lumosity course known as Math Tutor to train participants with Turner’s Syndrome, a genetic disorder known to affect math ability. Not only did these participants improve in core math skills, but they also demonstrated improvements in basic cognitive abilities such as executive function. Brain areas crucial to math processes lit up in fMRI brain scans of the test subjects, showing that Lumosity training enhanced activation in these key brain areas. This article was also published in the journal Neuropsychological Rehabilitation.
And, this summer, researchers from Lumosity’s in-house science team published the first ever study demonstrating that normal, healthy adults could use online cognitive training to enhance memory and attention. Published in the Mensa Research Journal, this study showed that participants who spent just 20 minutes a day doing Lumosity’s training exercises over a period of five weeks saw ~10 percent improvements in working memory and ~20 percent improvements in visual attention. Control participants who did not train did not improve.
Lumosity is the Web’s #1 source of scientifically designed brain games, and these three recent articles only cement its role as a leader in the innovative field of brain training. In each of these three studies, participants also improved on transfer of training — tests of abilities that participants handn’t seen before. In other words, people used Lumosity to improve core underlying cognitive abilities such as processing speed, attention, and working memory. These core abilities are the building blocks of intelligence; improving them means you really are getting smarter, not just better at doing one task. This new science is great news for all of us — we have the power to make ourselves smarter using well-crafted tools like Lumosity.com.