Brain training books, DVDs tap into cognitive conciousness

  • Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2013 12:01 a.m.
'The Memory Prescription
'The Memory Prescription" by Dr. Gary Small

SALISBURY — Recent studies prove that an “active cognitive lifestyle” may be able to slow cognitive decline. Other research, as well as anecdotal evidence, has concluded that tasks such as puzzles, brain games and trivia may boost brain activity.

From the various recommendations made from this type of research, the three most consistent were:

Exercise: Physical exercise increases oxygen to your brain and reduces the risk for disorders that lead to memory loss. Recommended highly were aerobic exercises such as walking, dancing, Pilates, zumba. Books and videos at Rowan Public Library include: “Complete Walking for Health,” Mark Fenton, and “Leslie Sansone Walk at Home” DVD; “10-minute Pilates with the ball,” by Lesley Ackland, and “Pilates/Yoga for anyBODY” (DVD); “Zumba: Ditch the Workout, Join the Party,” by Beto Perez and “Dance to Fitness” (DVD).

Brain-boosting diet: The brain needs fuels just like your body does. Many items are available in RPL for a brain healthy diet, including: “Your Miracle Brain” by Jean Carper, and “The Memory Prescription” by Gary Small.

Stimulate your brain: Memory, like muscle, requires you to “use it or lose it.” The more you work out your brain, the better you will be able to process and remember information. RPL has several books available on the subject: “Aha! Gotcha: Paradoxes to puzzle and delight” by Martin Gardner; “Hexaflexagons and other mathematical diversions: the first American book of puzzles and games,” also by Gardner; “The Memory Bible” by Gary Small.

You have probably also heard about websites that help train your mind. Some of the most popular for electronic devices are: Lumosity.; Fit Brains — Guilt Free Fun!; Happy Neuron by Quixit:Home; and Cognitive fun!

Much has been written about various ways to “train your brain.” The human brain has long been ignored when it came to research. Now many countries are competing for research money to help determine factors that can help improve memory skills and conquer brain diseases such as depression, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s. The International Brain Project, based in Switzerland, was recently awarded 2 billion Euros for this type of research. Can we expect more funding for such an important topic?

Computer classes: Introduction to NC Digital Library and eBooks — Feb. 18, 7 p.m., South; Feb. 19, 1 p.m., East (registration required, call 704-216-7731); Feb. 21, 9:30 a.m., Headquarters.

Learn to browse, search and check out items from the NC Digital Library collection. Read eBooks on a computer, laptop, Kindle, Nook or other e-readers. Classes are free. Sessions are about 90 minutes long. Class size is limited and on a first-come, first-serve basis. Dates and times at all locations are subject to change without notice.

Children’s Storytime: Weekly through April 26. For more information. call 704-216-8234

Headquarters — Tuesday, 10:30 a.m., Toddler Time (18- to 35-month-olds); Wednesday, 11 a.m., Baby Time (6- to 23-month-olds); Thursday, 10:30 a.m., Preschool Time (3- to 5-year-olds); Thursday, 4 p.m., Noodlehead (4- to 8-years-olds.)

South — Monday, 4 p.m., Noodlehead; Tuesday, 10:30 a.m., Baby Time; 1:30 p.m., Preschool Time; Wednesday, 10:30 a.m., Toddler Time.

East — Monday, 10 a.m., Baby Time; Monday, 11 a.m., Toddler Time; Wednesday, 10:30 a.m., Preschool Time.

JR’s Adventure Club: Headquarters, Feb. 2, 11 a.m. A different adventure each month for children of all ages. Call 704-216-8234 to learn more.

Movie night at Headquarters: Tuesday, 6:30 p.m., “O Brother Where Art Thou?” All movies are rated G, PG or PG 13. Children should be accompanied by an adult. Free popcorn and lemonade.

Chocolate festival for teens: All 5:30-7 p.m. South, Feb. 12; East, Feb. 25; Headquarters, Feb. 26. Chocolate fountain, taste testing, painting and more. For more information, call 704-216-8234.

Book Chats for Children: South (only), Feb. 21, 4:15 p.m., “Catwings” by Ursula K. Le Guin, grade 2. Children in grades 2-5 (different grade each month) are invited to participate in Book Chats at South Rowan Regional Library in China Grove. Registration is required and space is limited. Please call 704-216-7728 for more information.

PAC Club: Headquarters, Feb. 23, 1 p.m. Popular Activities and Crafts Club focusing on a different popular children’s book series each month. Call 704-216-8234 for more information.

Book Bites Club: South (only), Feb. 26, 6:30 p.m., “The Time Traveler’s Wife” by Audrey Niffenegger. Book discussion groups for both adults and children will meet the last Tuesday of each month. The group is open to the public and anyone is free to join at any time. There is a discussion of the book, as well as light refreshments at each meeting. For more information, please call 704-216-8229.

Displays for February: headquarters, Sidney Blackmer collection; South, student art by Corriher-Lipe Middle School; East, 4-H by Ann Furr.

Literacy: Call the Rowan County Literacy Council at 704-216-8266 for more information on teaching or receiving literacy tutoring for English speakers or for those for whom English is a second language.

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