brain gym exercisesYour brain is an amazing organ. Even before you were born it was busily working away while you were in your mother’s womb, interchanging information between your brain cell neurons at the unbelievable rate of 15 million per hour! By the time you popped out into the big wide world, your brain contained over 100 billion brain cells, ready and waiting to interact with your new environment and create the network that will comprise your entire nervous system.

During the first 4 to 5 years of your life, your brain worked feverishly to arrive at the complete cerebral nervous structure that would support you during the rest of your journey through life. Because your first years up to early adulthood are your formative years, when you absorb most of the learning that you need to make your way in the world, your brain remains very active, and this activity keeps it fit and healthy. But as you progress through life, your brain activity slows down, and unless you take some sort of counter measures, your brain’s fitness will inevitably deteriorate.

This deterioration is not calamitous, but it does worsen as you grow older, and by the time you reach your 50s and 60s, measurable differences can be perceived. The ultimate nightmare is eventually falling foul of dementia or Alzheimer’s, but even the “normal” slow down of brain activity can still impede your reactions, slowing down the ability to make decisions and making you appear somewhat confused to others around you.

It is of course wholly possible t keep your brain active, and even promote new expansion to your neural network, by employing various forms of mental exercise (crossword puzzles, mental arithmetic etc), and even some new physical actions too. You can also practice doing intricate things with your “other” hand (i.e. not the one you normally write with). The reason that it feels so cumbersome at first is that your brain is having to learn new actions that it is unused to, but this is a very important part of building new neural pathways and connecting hitherto unconnected synapses.

But don’t forget that actual physical exercise is now also being recognized and recommended as an important way of helping to keep your brain fit and active too. New research conducted by neurobiologist JW Lichtman M.D., Pd.D, has proven that your muscles, when employed, actually activate brain receptors; so any exercise that promotes the use of those muscles is therefore beneficial to the health and fitness of your brain.

Here’s a very simple physical exercise that you can do each morning when you wake up. It’s perfect for our more senior citizens because it takes very little if any physical strain, yet it still stimulates the brain. You can do this while still in bed. Begin by slowly moving your toes. It doesn’t really matter which way; you can stretch them, lift them upwards, bend them downward, or splay them out. Any movement is good. Believe it or not, (please do because it’s 100% true), it actually stimulates not only your brain, but other body organs too!

Your feet are actually a terrific piece of body engineering. With 8 arches, over 200 ligaments, and 40 different muscles with 56 different bones, they contain as much as one quarter of your body’s physiology. With all those neural pathways to control it’s no wonder that foot exercises come so highly recommended as brain exercises!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *