Brain Training Really Does Work

by Matilda Charles


Research on seniors who underwent brain training shows that the effects

were still there 10 years later. The 3,000 seniors, with an average age

of 74, only had to participate in a dozen or so training sessions lasting

about an hour each to get years of gain.


The study, done by Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, was called the

Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly study,

or ACTIVE. Participants were divided into four groups: three receiving

training in memory (word lists), processing speed (identifying objects) or

reasoning (looking for number patterns), plus a group who didn’t get any

training. They were tested at intervals of one, two, three, five and 10

years. More than half got additional training to increase the effects.

The results: Memory gains seemed to drop off after five years, but

processing speed and gains in reasoning ability still were evident 10

years later. Compared to those who didn’t get the training, participants

were more able to handle daily activities such as cooking, money and



More than 73 percent of those who’d had reasoning training still scored

above their pre-training levels. In processing speed, some 70 percent

scored at or above their pre-training levels. When it came to memory,

however, the trained group and the control group scored equally.


To see the processing-speed training in action, go online to and sample a few of the questions. You’ll be asked

to enter your name and a password, but instead look for the tiny “maybe

later” button and click that to continue without signing up. (The cost is

$8 a month if paid annually.) And on the front screen, scroll down the

right side and click on Landmark Study Shows Benefits of BrainHQ Training

Last 10 Years to learn more about the research.


Matilda Charles regrets that she cannot personally answer reader

questions, but will incorporate them into her column whenever possible.


Send email to

(c) 2014 King Features Synd., Inc.

Facebookby feather
Facebookby feather
%d bloggers like this: