Cognitive sports training: The next frontier
In previous posts I have talked about cognitive sports training, what it is and things to think about when looking to incorporate it into your training regimen. Today I want to talk about one system in particular. It is a system after extensive research to try and find a good fit for my work with clients I decided to incorporate. Now saying that I want to say that there are a lot of great systems out there, and eventually I might incorporate more, but for what I do with clients and how best to serve my clients I found a system called NeuroTracker to best thing to incorporate with my clients.
What is NeuroTracker?
NeuroTracker is a cognitive training tool designed to enhance your athletic performance. It uses 3D technology to help improve on-field performance. The two main areas it focuses on are 5 key attention skills and working memory. Awareness and attention are the key skills that allow athletes to make good decisions on the field. In the brain, one of the most significant demands on awareness is multiple object tracking. On the field, this involves perceiving other players moving all around, identifying patterns, predicting other players movements and processing biological motion cues. Attention is the force players must use to focus their mental resources and maintain awareness. A lapse of attention means a loss of awareness.
NeuroTracker isolates the basic mental elements of awareness and focus because it tests attention through multiple object tracking, NeuroTracker overloads athletes by asking them to mentally focus at high speeds repeatedly. Through a scientific conditioning process, NeuroTracker builds up the raw tools for maintaining awareness and attention even in the highest pressure game situations.
The software enhances critical abilities including:
- Mental focus
- Situational awareness
- Visual processing speed
- Sustained concentration
How will NeuroTracker make me a better athlete?
- Make better decisions under pressure
- Anticipate actions earlier and more accurately
- Identify and focus on key opportunities
- Stay sharp throughout a long season
- Improve situational awareness
How does training progress?
To achieve best results, NeuroTracker training should incorporate increasingly complex dual-tasks. When a user first begins their program, they start in a seated position until they have consolidated the basic training. Once this is achieved, we then begin adding secondary tasks such as balancing, physical exercise or sport specific skills, all while maintaining focus on the NeuroTracker task. There is no limit on what type of dual-tasks can be combined.
Elite teams and groups that use NeuroTracker include: Manchester United, Atlanta Falcons, US soccer, Montreal Impact, Vancouver Canucks, Detroit Pistons, and many more.
Based on over 20 years of research at the University of Montreal. It has 25 published research papers and 40+ on going research projects. It was designed to uniquely address high level cognitive function, and has become a valuable tool to measure and enhance the efficiency of neural networks that govern situational awareness, attention, executive function and cognitive stamina.
Can I do it at home?
NeuroTracker is available either onsite at the office in San Diego or through an at home version. We have created programs that include, onsite only, at home only or a mix. There are some differences between onsite capabilities and an at home program. Depending on your situation a program can be created to fit your needs.