Do brain building games really work?


What do you guys think of the various brain building games that are on the market? There are programs for the most game systems and PDAs. Some that come to mind include Brain Age for the Nintendo DS and Advanced Brain Trainer for Palm OS. If you don’t happen to have a PDA or game system, there’s a web based alternative called Lumosity. The games that it provides are supposed to help you improve your memory, attention, processing speed and cognitive control. I can sure use all the help I can get to improve my memory, so I have been playing the games this afternoon. Each game is fun and easy to play and doesn’t take a lot of time. If you want to keep playing after the free trial ends, you can pay per month or per year. We’ll see if I can tell any difference after the 7-day free trial ends.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Jackson July 27, 2008, 11:25 pm

    I have Spb Brain Evolution on my HTC TyTn II. I’ve faithfully played it every day since April. As you get better at the different Brain Training games, it unlocks new games, up to 10 different ones, and the games get progressively harder. Most of the games are timed to make them even more stressful. If you make it to a higher level, but then slack off, it demotes you to a lower level. I’m very frustrated with it. However, I can now do math problems like a whiz, Sudoku is a piece of cake and have Master status at Balltracker. But I’ve only unlocked 8 of 10 games. It tells me I’ve only attained Schoolboy status, 33%. I don’t know who invented this evil game, but I’m thinking I don’t like them >:-( Has anyone mastered this nightmare?

  • Julie July 28, 2008, 8:51 am

    With Lumosity, I’m good at the matching and spatial games, but not so hot with the word and math games. I’ve only done 2 sessions so far, so my brain needs some exercise in those areas :o)

  • Martin Walker July 28, 2008, 11:30 am

    Sharp Brains recently reviewed the brain fitness product market to see which products had the scientific credentials to back up their claims. They gave Lumosity 2 out of 10… And no product scored more than 5 out of 10.

    Anyone interested in brain training should see Susanne Jaeggi and Martin Buschkuehl’s study on Improving Fluid Intelligence by Training Working Memory (PNAS April 2008) which recorded increases in mental agility (fluid intelligence) of more than 40% with less than 20 days of focused brain training.

    I was so impressed that I contacted the research team and developed a software program using the same method. I’ve been using the training myself, of course, and the results are far from subtle. I can now tackle, and complete!, the Saturday crossword puzzle, for instance, when before I used to get stuck on Thursday.

    IQ Training Program

    mind evolve, llc

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