Q: Describe “The NeuroTracker?”
A: Well, it’s a virtual system that allows sports people to sharpen their perceptual and cognitive abilities for optimum performance. It’s a scientific innovation, invented by world leading neurophysicist Dr. Jocelyn Faubert from the University of Montreal, which gauges and improves cognitive performance in sports and daily activities.
Q: How would you describe it to a novice?
A: In a nutshell, it’s a 3D multiple-object tracking system that was designed to isolate and train attentional mechanisms related to vision. This training enhances the scanning speed of a visual scene and increases attention span. NeuroTracker uses a large 3D display, to improve and train athletes’ tracking skills by challenging their visionary perceptions to tracking many targets at various speeds.
Q: How does NeuroTracker help athletes?
A: An athlete’s performance, amateur or professional, consists of a broad range of cognitive skills. This includes processing speed, efficiency of the learning, working memory, and level of attention. A training routine should include drills to improve cognitive skills, just as good nutrition helps muscular development.
Q: I’m concerned that this doesn’t have the same intensity as a real game.
Being able to conquer these skills in a non-competitive environment is a good start. Then you can add physical and sport-specific challenges to increase the intensity of your training. You can keep adding layers of intensity until it equals or exceeds the cognitive load of a real game.
Q: How long is each session on NeuroTracker?
A: If you’re worried by how long these sessions might be, well, don’t because they only last for 3-5 minutes at a time. The effects for anyone who undertakes this, especially athletes, are dramatic because there is a speedy brain development process that ensures targeted cognitive stimulation.
Q: Is this only limited to team sports?
Experiments have shown that such intense training may have positive effects in some activities of daily living (Legault and Faubert, 2012). Further in-depth research in other areas of sports, even like car racing (Faubert, Bellavance and Hirsch, 2013) has shown improved decision-making.
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