Brain fitness can mean the difference between being able to quickly recount memories as opposed to forgetting last years Christmas celebrations.
Brain Fitness Though Juggling
Maintaining a brain that serves you well throughout your whole life, can be achieved by the simple art of juggling. Now although many other factors will come into your life which may impact your health and well being, it has been proven that juggling can in fact enhance your brain fitness and your brain’s neuroplasticity. This is the ability of the brain to change and grow with new stimuli introduced.
Although it is not an easy task to master straight away, is one of the best ways you can improve the fitness of your brain. Every time you see a juggler on the street or performing a juggling act on stage, know one thing about this person – their brain is fit, in fact, their brain is very fit. Not only is juggling a wonderful aerobic exercise pumping oxygen around a body through physical actions.
Brain Fitness Benefits
Juggling also achieves the following benefits:
Improving your hand-eye coordination – being able to hand-write, type and catch a ball well into your nineties
Enhancing your reflexes – think how important this is when driving
Improving your peripheral vision – did you see that other car out of the corner of your eye coming towards you whilst you were crossing the road?
Changing your brain’s grey matter – being able to process calculations, recall where you met a person in the past, remembering names and faces
Enhancing your overall motor skills
There was an experiment carried out by researchers in Germany at the University of Regensberg. A group of 12 people who were inexperienced in the art of juggling were asked to practice this activity for 3 months.
At the end of this period, when this group were compared to a group which were the control group (they did no juggling at all), brain scans showed the juggling group had increased their grey matter (cell bodies responsible for processing and computing in the brain) by 3-4 %.
Note, when this group stopped juggling for 3 months and were then re-examined, the initial grey matter had decreased by 2-3%.
A further study was carried outwith a group of older adults in 2008 at the University of Hamburg. The results were similar in that the juggling activity over a period of 3 months once again achieved Brain fitnessthe following benefits:
1. Within the hippocampus (part in the brain forming memories) there was an improvement in the processing of these memories
2.the nucleus accumbens (brain’s pleasure center)and visual centers showed improvement.
Although the improvements deteriorated when the juggling ceased, this experiment once again suggested that the aging brain can retain its ability to change and grow when challenged and faced with new experiences.
So, the key point here is that, you can increase your brain fitness and influence your brain’s efficiency in terms of processing power if you challenge it. This is extremely important as is consistency with such challenges and new experiences. A simple activity like juggling can be the very activity that you can do any where, at any time such as at home, in your backyard, at the park, or with a group of friends which will improve the fitness of your brain.