Are you like many of us who regularly engage in a sudoku puzzle, crossword or wordwheel in an attempt to keep the old grey matter ticking over? Or you may have taken it to the next level and paid for a subscription for apps and websites to play brain training games to boost intelligence and delay the ageing process.
It appears, however, that the efficacy of such activities is disputed. In 2014, 70 eminent neuroscientists and cognitive psychologists put their names to a letter stating that that there was insufficient evidence to show that the games improve general cognitive performance in everyday life, or prevent cognitive slowing down and brain disease.
An extensive examination of scientific literature by seven psychologists last year found flaws in many studies offering positive claims for brain training. Nevertheless, scientists do seem united on one thing: that regularly playing brain training games improves people's aptitude for these particular mental tasks. It would seem that if you want to enhance your intelligence or mental skills it may be more beneficial practising those things you want to improve!
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URC Church, Wiltown