Q: “I have a question about a topic in your Speed Secrets book. In the book you talk a lot about the mental side of racing and a lot of the specific cognitive abilities that race car drivers need. I’ve been using brain training apps like Lumosity and Peak and I was wondering if doing brain training to improve in areas such as processing speed, mental agility, focus, coordination and others would be helpful.”
A: While I’ve not yet seen any scientific research that has been done with drivers and the types of apps you’re talking about (at least none that I’ve found yet), I feel that they do help. I’ve used Lumosity and a few other apps, and believe they help. But how much, I can’t say. Again, I’ve never seen any scientific data to prove this, but I’m confident when saying these apps will not hurt anything. And hey, if it gives you a 0.001% improvement, why not use it, right?
My own experience is that when I use these apps – and any digital game – it seems to help the amount of time I’m able to maintain mental focus. So I’m going to say they help.
Also, on a recent webinar, Fitness for Drivers, that I did with Trey Shannon (Podium Performance Fitness), he shared how he uses many of these mental training apps while having drivers doing some form of physical activity. This could be doing a plank, cardio training, or in a sauna to acclimate to heat, for example. The idea is to stress the mind while being physically stressed, which sounds an awfully lot like performance or race driving, doesn’t it?