Neuroplasticity – Why you can learn a new skill anytime.

Hi guys,

I wanted to give you some thinking to do and offer you an insight into how we learn new skills.

Being a Physiotherapist as well as an electronic music producer, I have been aware of the concept of neuroplasticity for a while. The fact that the brain remodels its wiring after a neurological event (I.e stroke, head injury), in chronic pain states, and with practise of a certain skill set.

Did you know that you do not actually feel pain in the arm, leg or even abdomen? In fact it is the brain that computes all the necessary information from the pain signals coming in, does a bit of a loop in the brain to account for past experiences and emotional states, and then decides whether the current signal signifies enough danger to warrant a pain response. Damage to the body will illicit a pain response, smaller innocuous incidents may not. The brain can cut out the pain response.

The same applies to a new skill. Most people give up when they try a new skill. They pick up a racquet, miss a few balls and say, “Well, I was never great at ball sports,”. However we now know that nobody is just good at something straight away. It takes years of deep practise to achieve a world class skillset. This is because the neural pathways in the brain need to be recruited and remodelled.

From the emerging neuroscience of excellence, areas of the brain associated with the skill you are practising get bigger. Therefore you get better. But only with time. The finger map in the brain of pianists are far greater enlarged than those of people who do not practise the piano. It is the brains way of diverting more resources to the area you have chosen to practise in.

So the brain is essentially like a muscle, the neural activity can heighten depending on the skill you choose to develop with deep levels of practise. How else can producers, sports people and actors get better throughout their careers? Because with practise their neural programming gets sharper, they become more efficient in their actions and learn from experience.

So I encourage you, to focus on that one skill you wish to learn. And practise every day. Your brain will literally change.

What do you think?

Leave your comments below

Elton xx

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