Using Brain Games to help increase your IQ

There is an often quoted expression in life which is ‘Use it, don’t lose it’.

This can apply to many obvious things like a corner shop or a local swimming pool. It implies that if you do not use a facility, it will likely disappear. This article shows you that the same can also apply to your brain.

Increasing Your Opportunities

Imagine if, after leaving school, you take a job where you never use mental arithmetic in any form for 5 years. Imagine being with someone who uses mental arithmetic every day, perhaps they are a grocer. If you were both then asked to add 34 + 28 + 29 + 14, it is likely the grocer will give the swiftest reply. It is also likely the grocer would be correct more times than you in a series of tests.

This is a very simple example of efficient brain function. The more you do something, the easier it becomes. It is ‘training’. It teaches the brain how to work more swiftly and efficiently. This is why brain games help to increase your IQ. There is another expression which again equates to many walks in life. That is “Practice makes perfect”.

Do you remember learning your times tables? Did you ever learn them or have you always used a calculator to do even the basic sums? There are other jobs where using brain teasers can make life easier for you.

What about if you work behind a bar?

Someone orders four drinks and the bar is packed. You bring them their drinks, return to the till, input the four drinks and wait for the till to tell you the total. You then go back to the customer and tell them how much the drinks are. You take their money, return to the till, take out their change and return to them to hand it over.

If you use brain games, one of the main ones is mental arithmetic, and if you are good at that, then you can become 33% more efficient as a barman. How? Well when you serve the drinks, you will have totalled the sum up in your head and without returning to the till, you can tell the customer what they have to pay. You immediately cut your return trips to the customer from three to two than if you had to use the till to do the adding up for you.

Be Smart and Think Smart with brain games

The higher your IQ the more impressed any employer will be. As a result, any boost you can give to your score will be a good thing. Well one of the problems with IQ tests is that they involve questions you are not used to answering. They require you to logically work things out. Therefore, it makes sense to practice this type of question by using mind games, which often use the same format.

That is where brain games are incredibly useful. Not only do they help to keep your brain ticking over and in tip-top condition, they familiarize you with the way IQ questions work. Brain games come in a variety of formats. As mentioned, there is the mental arithmetic style game. Then there is pattern recognition where you try and work out which is the wrong pattern in a group. Additionally there are sequence questions where you have to work out what the next number, picture or pattern will be in a sequence. Some brain training exercises are word-based.

What brain training makes you accustomed to a way of thinking, and brain teasers or games are the best option. Learning is often about understanding. Understanding what a question is asking for makes it easier to find the correct solution. Attempting a series of examples makes it easier to understand how to work out the correct solution. Improving your mental skills is one of the best ways to improve your IQ.

Brain games also come under a number of other names you may have come across before. These include ‘brain teasers’, ‘mind games’ and ‘brain teasers. All of them share one common thing, and that is they involve a high level of interaction. This makes all these types of brain games ideal for trying on the internet.

Other side of the coin

In 2010 the Nature published a very interesting debate on impact of brain training games on the performance of 11,430 volunteers aged from 18 to 60. The research was conducted by the BBC. The study could not prove any phenomenal impact of training games on the performance. The article notes:

“There were absolutely no transfer effects" from the training tasks to more general tests of cognition, says Adrian Owen, a neuroscientist at the Medical Research Council (MRC) Cognition and Brian Sciences Unit in Cambridge, UK, who led the study. "I think the expectation that practising a broad range of cognitive tasks to get yourself smarter is completely unsupported."

The nature also quotes Peter Snyder, a neurologist from Brown University's Alpert Medical School in Providence, Rhode Island opposing the very study.

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More on Brain Games

A brief on Brain Teasers

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