Posts Tagged ‘contest’

Memory Champions Win by Training Not Genetics

Organized and professionally managed memory contests are growing in popularity worldwide.  For example, the United Kingdom Open Memory Championship was just held in August. Many amazing feats were recorded including a mental athlete that was able to memorize a deck of 52 cards in sequence in 80 seconds.

The World Memory Sports Council captures data on competitions, memory events and records.  Events range from memorizing the order of cards to historic dates and linking names and faces.

To qualify as a grand master of memory you must achieve the memorization of:

  1. 100 numbers in an hour
  2. 10 decks of cards in an hour (520 cards)
  3. One deck in two minutes or under

No easy feat.  It is interesting to note that grand masters, record holders and winners in the various national memory championship tend to claim the same thing:

It does not take high IQ or other special mental gifts to be a memory champion. Instead it takes discipline and the willingness to train intensively.

This is great new for readers of the Next Brain Blog.  It suggests that systematic training can greatly improve brain function and cognitive performance. It also provides a context to test your brain fitness and compete in a national or international memory championship.

Very interested to hear from readers that participate in the mind sport of memory. What techniques do you use to train? Has this training improved your cognitive performance in everyday life?

12 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Mark Clare - September 7, 2010 at 1:57 am

Categories: Memory and Learning, Mental Focus, Training   Tags: