Neuroplasticity – the elixir of youth: and how to boost yours
Neuroplasticity is the ability of the brain’s components to learn and to adapt. It can occur at all levels from molecular to synaptic to local networks to brain circuits. While it does diminish somewhat with age it is maximised during deep sleep or following life changes such as brain injury, adolescence or pregnancy. Modelling indicates that increasing neuroplasticity by 10% leads to halving of the time needed to learn a complex skill. In this talk I focus on how neuroplasticity can be fostered at the ‘systems’ level – the major brain circuits – and argue that in addition to priming plasticity processes, it may be advantageous to ‘disrupt’ existing processes by presenting ‘cerebellar-somatic challenges’ that take the brain/body out of its comfort zone, thereby providing evolutionarily important plasticity triggers. I illustrate this theoretical background with studies – utilising the Zing Performance self neurodevelopment platform – on ageing well and on reading well. I then highlight the opportunities provided by the framework in any domain that requires ‘breaking the habits of a lifetime’ from homeostatic systems to addiction to psychological disorders.
These powerful techniques and ideas can double your learning speed, add life to your years, and turbocharge your research. And I’ll demonstrate the infinity balance technique. Everyone is welcome.
About the speaker
Find out more about Professor Rod Nicholson’s research