Friday, October 31, 2014

Friday Freebie: What I'm Reading in Ten Minutes or Less: Brain Training
Sorry I'm late. I was polishing my monthly submission for Tech Talk and I haven't yet learned how to write two blogs at once :-)

I have learned how to take advantage of the overlap, though. Although the piece I was polishing won't run until Thursday, it gave me lots of fun things to read. This month's topic? Lumosity.

For those of you not familiar with the app, it's a brain training training app based on the concept of neuroplasticity, the brain's ability to be flexible and rewire itself based on experience. There's still a lot we don't know about neuroplasticity, but the research that's been done so far has positive implications for both mental health and rehabilitation after diseases (or their treatments) that affect the brain.

But Lumosity's not about diseases. It's a bunch of games -- a mental workout, if you will -- that purport to improve cognition. A bunch of games I started playing after I downloaded the app for free.

Does Lumosity produce long-term brain changes? The answer is, as yet, unclear. There have been some positive findings, but the data supporting transfer of skills beyond the games is still a little fuzzy.

Today's Friday Freebie (Online Brain-Training: Does it Really Work?) is about Lumosity and other apps like it, along with the science behind them. Though the article is more than a year old, it was one of the most fun and balanced articles I found on the subject. Or maybe I just liked her English accent.

If you've tried Lumosity or something like it, leave me a comment to let me know what you think. My free trial expired, so I've been locked out of some of my games. I got my husband hooked on it, though, so I'm thinking of giving the family membership a try.

I just hope want to make sure it gets used more than the family gym membership.

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