“Batter Up…Player Down”

Awww… so cute and soft and cuddly! At what point is it we look at this sweet innocent little face and ask this little man or sweet little girl, to entertain us by running as fast as they can bumping, banging, pushing or falling into another person, and then encouraging them to chase a ball.

Here’s a game…a game of risk, a game of challenge. How about 10,000 children run all over a field and it is promised that each of you at some point (and you never know when) will get your head clobbered…could be hard enough to ‘ring your bell’, maybe hard enough to be carried out on a stretcher but either way it will happen and probably many times. But the reward is that 6 out of the 10,000 on the field will have a shot at playing with other Pro’s; 7 figure income, huge homes, and nice clothes. Oh, and more than likely it will leave lasting behavioral changes; inappropriate responses to people, easily angered, more likely to take risks, can’t think things through, depressed, and possibly can’t keep a job because you may not be able to think ahead or remember details.

The clincher is, as a society we are encouraging our babies to grow to be aggressive, competitive sports players on the .06% chance that they may succeed into a Pro athlete. The other 9,994 people that tried as hard as they could now are failing school, because they are inattentive (that happens with ‘head bonks’) and are acting out in class, even being mean (they just saw their Mom fighting with another parent at their game last night! Oh by the way, the practice for these games, for an 11 year old is from 6:30-9:00 pm every Tuesday & Thursday night, meaning interrupted sleep which leads to less Prefrontal Cortex access. Every weekend games and very little down time to relax much less do their homework. So they are growing up in a very fast paced, anxiety-driven, competitive life. It is no wonder our children are the most medicated group of Americans, for anxiety and focus.

Did you know 1.3 million children sustained injuries bad enough to land them in the hospital last year and all under the guise of playing a ‘game’. It was also documented that 1 child every 3 minutes was seen for a sports-related concussion! The group ‘Safe Kids Worldwide’ reported that 1 in 5 kids that go to ER are going for a Sports related injury. *http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/08/06/injuries-athletes-kids-sports/2612429/

This report also stated
* Football resulted in both the highest number of all pediatric injuries (394,350) and the highest concussion rate (40 per 10,000 athletes). Wrestling and cheer-leading had the second- and third-highest concussion rates (15 per 10,000 athletes and 12 per 10,000 athletes, respectively).

* Ice hockey had the highest percentage (31%) of concussion injuries; its rate was 10 per 10,000 athletes.

* The most common injuries were to the ankle (15%), followed by head (14%) finger (12%), knee (9%) and face (7%).

I can understand the ‘draw’ to competition and the need to ‘live on’ through your child, I have two children myself, and got caught up in the social aspect of travel soccer. But now we are in an age of knowledge, it seems parents might reconsider ‘forfeiting’ their child’s school performance and future for a chance at playing a Sport now. It is well known exercise in important and vital to growth, however, competitive, aggressive contact sports are unnecessary for any human development. As Beth Silverberg states in this video, we are creating new gladiators, and all for our entertainment. http://youtu.be/TYhvWmyUrts

What gift do you really want to give your child to live with as an adult?


Auditory Processing- Remediation of Auditory Sequential Memory

Auditory Processing- Remediation of Auditory Sequential Memory

At Cognitive Connections, we find many people have concerns with listening skills. Did you know most men start to lose their ability to discriminate the tiniest sounds (phonemes) in a word around 25 years old. Whereas, women start to lose this ability during peri-menopause, when they no longer need to distinguish between their babies cries.

We have found that using EEG Neurofeedback (and for us, specifically NeurOptimal ) will allow the body to be as relaxed as possible while allowing the brain to be as focused as it can be. This sets a platform for learning new information. When the brain is unable to learn this information on its own, a remediation process can help with learning. We use games, table-top activities, songs and rhythm to create a new learning environment so the brain can make this new connection.

Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) is a condition in the brain that happens when the brain is unable to decipher the auditory information the ears actually hear. This interpretation of auditory information can have a ‘break-down’ from what the ears hear and what the brain perceives. This means the ‘mechanisms for hearing’ may work fine, but the brain misinterprets the signals. The remediation process can consist of FUN games that will assist in helping that brain process this information in a different way for comprehension and performance. We focus on four basic areas of Central Auditory Processing; Auditory Discrimination, Auditory Association, Auditory Reception and as you will learn more about today, Auditory Sequential Memory. I will suggest a few ‘remediation’ games should you decide this is a problem in your life.

Auditory Sequential Memory: the number of random digits an individual can recall from working memory. The longer the series of numbers the stronger the ‘rote memory’ that brain can hear and retain. Therefore, this is the area that makes someone appear smart, or sadly, appear as if they know very little about a topic. It either allows you to memorize a great deal of information (to pass tests) or it inhibits someone from storing this information in short term memory for recall. This is important because we need to ‘hold’ information in our working memory so we can postulate, deduce, and reason with the information before making a decision about it. All of our ‘story problems’ require a healthy working memory to be able to solve math problems.

A typical adult has a 7-10 digit Auditory Sequential Memory, most children have attained this by age of 10-12 years old. If you think you or your child’s Sequential Memory needs assistance you might want to try some of the following games. They can all be found online and purchased relatively inexpensively, some may even be found used on E-bay. Of course, most of us were raised with family games that increased this ability, such as; “I am going on a picnic and I am going to take…” (then you must remember each person’s item and add to the list), or perhaps the handheld game of ‘Simon’.

Games for increasing Auditory Sequential Memory

Brain Fitness Pro /Jr. by Mind Sparke
Sequencing in a Flash
Brain Builder

There are many other Web-based, Board, Card, Hand-held, iPad and Android games that will ‘exercise’ the brain in a way that will increase the number of digits a brain can retain. For an individualized Cognitive Plan for yourself for Peak Performance or for your child, please contact http://www.Cognitive-Connections.com or 317-888-7420.