Essential Reads

Can Artificial Intelligence Make Us Happy?

Does AI spell the doom of humankind? Or should we welcome it? Given the significant limitations of human rationality, only AI can help humans to solve many difficult problems.

The Neuroscience of Finger Length Ratio and Athletic Prowess

By Christopher Bergland on October 14, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
Neuroscientists have found a correlation between finger length ratios and brain function. A new study reports that having a shorter index finger may indicate athletic potential.

In Defense of the Value of Football

Despite the recent fears of CTE, football remains a valuable tool for developing youth.

A Fundamental Source of Error in Human Judgment

By Gary Smith Ph.D. on October 07, 2016 in What the Luck?
We encounter it almost every day, yet almost nobody understands it.

More Posts on Sport and Competition

Aha! Aerobic Exercise Facilitates the Free Flow of Thought

Albert Einstein once said of E=mc2, "I thought of it while riding my bicycle." There is growing empirical and anecdotal evidence that aerobic exercise stimulates "Aha!" moments.

What Do You Tell Your Team the Night Before the Big Game?

By Hendrie Weisinger Ph.D. on March 26, 2016 in Thicken Your Skin
It's the night before the big game. What do you tell your team?

Sports and the Postgame Handshake

At the end of the game, should we always, without exception, attempt to shake the hands of our opponents?

Can Kobe Bryant Rebound From Retirement?

Old age can come sooner for professional athletes. Often with millions of dollars in the bank, and time on your hands, this presents a psychological challenge: how to retire.

Can Psychology Explain the Sharapova Doping Controversy?

In 2006, testosterone was the single most-common banned substance detected in urine tests at World Anti-Doping Agency accredited laboratories.

Michael Phelps and the Romance of Archetypal Heroic Journeys

The top swimmer's daily habits illustrate what it takes to become an Olympic champion. His new "Rule Yourself" ad campaign offers an intimate glimpse inside his personal journey.

Forget About Superman, What About Batman V Batgirl?

By E. Paul Zehr Ph.D. on March 08, 2016 in Black Belt Brain
Skill and achieved abilities are the great levelers between the sexes and across all. Even between Batgirl and Batman.

Balancing Precarious Emotions in Sport Concussion Protocols

By Harry Kerasidis M.D. on March 07, 2016 in Brain Trauma
Identifying emotional health during concussion baseline tests may not be expected. But they should be. Using unique "facial affect" recognition, we can help avoid major drama.

Advice For a Champion

Top human Go (baduk) player faces artificial intelligence this week. Our advice to the champion for taming the beast: Play as usual.
Creative Commons CCO

4 Reasons Why Your Kids Should Play Sports

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on March 07, 2016 in The Power of Prime
As any parent of young athletes knows, having your children participate in sports can be a real hassle.

Neurofeedback Illuminates Personalized Ways to Self-Motivate

Neuroscientists have developed a new method for pinpointing exactly what thoughts and images motivate a specific individual.

Book Brings Development and Attachment to Youth Sports

By Kristi Pikiewicz Ph.D. on March 02, 2016 in Meaningful You
Instead of telling parents what to do, our book, Raising Your Game, is based on lives of true experts, those who have experienced sports at every level.
Dengzeyu Li/Unsplash

How to Manage Competition in a Chaotic World

By Madelyn Blair Ph.D. on February 29, 2016 in Resilient Leadership
What do resilient leaders and Olympic athletes have in common? They both leverage the same key strategy to manage competition in ambiguous times.

Neuroscience Pinpoints Unique Way Exercise Fights Depression

By Christopher Bergland on February 28, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
A groundbreaking new study has pinpointed why vigorous exercise has the power to reduce depression and improve mental fitness.
Mitchell Gunn, used with permission

5 Keys to Playing Your Best on Game Day

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on February 22, 2016 in The Power of Prime
What do you need to do to play your best on game day? Here are 5 areas that I've learned from world-class and professional athletes.

Why Do Pro Footballers Disdain Artificial Turf?

Research shows that playing style is different on artificial turf.

Grappling with Disabilities

By David J Ley Ph.D. on February 20, 2016 in Women Who Stray
People with disabilities can not only participate, but thrive, in the growing world of Brazilian jiu jitsu.

Mind Over Brain--Your Will Must Be Stronger Than Your Skill

By E. Paul Zehr Ph.D. on February 19, 2016 in Black Belt Brain
There is a line separating doing all we can from doing all we will accept.

Does Breed Popularity Go Up After A Dog Wins At Westminster?

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on February 19, 2016 in Animals and Us
The Westminster Dog Show is the canine equivalent of the Miss America Contest. It is widely believed that a win is usually followed by a spike in breed popularity. But is it true?

Synchronized Brain Activity and Superfluidity Are Symbiotic

By Christopher Bergland on February 19, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
A new study has pinpointed how synchronized brain waves coordinate the function of various brain regions. The synchronization of various brain waves is the key to peak performance.

Let the Kids Sleep

By Stephen Gray Wallace on February 18, 2016 in Decisions Teens Make
New data links stressed and drowsy teenagers to dangers and disorders.

Why the Bond Between Straight Gals and Gay Guys Is Special

By Vinita Mehta Ph.D., Ed.M. on February 13, 2016 in Head Games
A new study explains why the friendship between straight women and gay men is so strong — and unique. In a word, trust.

"Interpersonal Synchrony" is Vital to Harmonious Matchmaking

By Christopher Bergland on February 10, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
A new study on "interpersonal synchrony" has pinpointed the optimal ingredients for creating harmonious partnerships.

Computer Program Beats European Go Champion

The Asian game of Go had long been considered out of reach for artificial intelligence. Not anymore! The success of AlphaGo confirms the role of pattern recognition in expertise.

Blake Griffin's Mea Culpa

By Mark Goulston M.D., F.A.P.A. on February 05, 2016 in Just Listen
How Blake Griffin could earn back the trust of fans and supporters after being a bully

What James Bond Teaches Us About Life

By Steve Albrecht DBA on February 05, 2016 in The Act of Violence
What can we learn about toughness from James Bond? Use these five tools for more mental and physical stamina.

Alone Together and Going Downhill

By Scott G. Eberle Ph.D. on February 05, 2016 in Play in Mind
Skiers who tune in tune out of the social side of skiing; insulated and cocooned this way, they miss attunement itself—a vital communal component of play.

Cam Newton Walks, Chews Gum, and Throws Touchdown Passes

By E. Paul Zehr Ph.D. on February 04, 2016 in Black Belt Brain
We've all known people who "can't walk and chew gum at the same time." Here's why Cam Newton can do all that and more.

Cam, Class, and Color

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on February 01, 2016 in Minority Report
Have you wondered why Cam Newton is getting so much vitriol and attention as he will soon make his first Superbowl appearance? Well some believe it's because he's Black....