Cognitive Fitness ― The New Frontier of Fitness
In Sports Psychology, it is well known that certain psychological skills can have a significant impact on physical performance when enhanced through specific exercises targeting cognitive fitness. Cognitive Fitness training is an essential factor in preparing both mind and body for exceptional sports performance.
Neuromodulation techniques for performance enhancement
Nowadays, we know that it is possible to optimize performance by acting directly on the brain through appropriate stimuli, including physical ones. Through the personalized and targeted use of Neuromodulation Techniques such as Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), Photo-Bio-Modulation (PBM) and Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) it is indeed possible to activate the brain in a way that promotes improved performance, even when physical activity is restricted for age-related reasons or temporary disabilities.
Through an integrated approach, we are able to address multiple components of performance. ① The recognition and enhancement of brain activity related to a mentally challenging state; ② The release of the energy required to sustain the muscular and mental effort required by the activities for which performance is desired to be enhanced.
➜ Thanks to the use of Neurofeedback, we are able to record a person's brain activity during concentration exercises, enabling him or her to evaluate and enhance attention levels in real time, resulting in improved cognitive performances. In this way, it becomes possible for the person to know and track the optimal functioning of his or her brain, thus enabling him or her to reproduce such brain function conditions in an autonomous manner allowing for the best possible performance in one's life activities. In addition, Neurofeedback can also be employed to identify the factors that underlie "mental fatigue," making it possible to intervene directly on these by reducing their negative effects and, thus, "curing" mental fatigue just as if it were a disorder.
➜ Following the same principles, Photo-Bio-Modulation (PBM) can be used to reduce muscle fatigue and mitigate the risks of brain damage that concussions can cause in contact sports such as boxing, soccer, American football, and rugby. Photo-Bio-Modulation has indeed been shown to promote vascular repair processes, reduce inflammation associated with microvascular damage, and promote neuronal plasticity, while also reducing inflammatory activation of brain support cells (neuroglia).
Learn more about Photo-Bio-Modulation, the latest technology for treating the Central Nervous System.
Neuroscience for Sports
Thanks to the opportunity of applying neuromodulation techniques for the promotion of Cognitive Fitness, we are observing a real revolution in the sports world, characterized by a vision capable of overcoming the traditional focus on the sole mental or psychological component underlying the sporting act. This is the introduction of the SPORT NEUROSCIENCES.
The most recent Olympic Games have highlighted a growing interest not only for Mental Coaches and Mental Fitness, but also for mental health more generally and mental disorders. By applying the method and knowledge of Neuroscience to the sports field, we are able to consider the brain circuits that underlie athletic performances, representing their true "engine." This enables us to make full use of our brain's potential to achieve extraordinary sports performance. We now know which brain structures are involved in the modulation of sporting gestures and we also know how to intervene on them: it is therefore time to apply neuroscience to sports!
This new vision finally contributes to overcome the stigma associated with neurology and psychiatry, recognizing the importance of these disciplines not only in the wider society, but also and especially in the sports arena where this stigma is perhaps even more pronounced.