Friday, February 27, 2009

Erasing Human Fear Response? New Study

It's Coming!
Just a heads up that I will be having a very special announcement in the next few days here on my blog. Until then, it will be top secret. For coaches/trainers or neuro freaks, I have an announcement at the end here just before the latest study also.

New Videos
I am working on updating my You Tube Channel, so check it out here

The newer videos can be found on the lower left hand side and more to come, so let me know what YOU want to see.

Z Health R Phase in Minnesota this August and September
Just got word from the fine folks at Z Health, that the Z Health level 1 R Phase cert will be here in Minnesota on Aug 14-16 and the second part on Sept 18-20.

If you are a personal trainer/fitness professional in the Twin Cities area, now is a perfect time to sign up for the course. Heck, it is well worth traveling for too as I've done almost all of my Z Health certs in AZ, CA or NC. I can honestly say that I have no regrets from doing any Z Health cert and I fully recommend them.

Full disclosure: I don't work for Z Health and I make ZERO money off of recommending the certs to anyone. I do however, get some money off further certifications for myself. I will be at the 9S Nutrition course they are doing for 5 days in AZ this July to further my own knowledge once again.

Any questions about the R Phase, please feel free to email me directly. If you talk to Z Health directly, tell them hello and that I sent ya. Email me by clicking HEREl

Below is MC's excellent review of R Phase, so don't just take my word for it.

What is Z-Health R-Phase: not your daddy's joint mobility

Z Health Information on this blog

Brand New Study on Fear Response
Below is an amazing new study, thanks to Andrew Schimming for sending it to me.

I've been following this research since about 4 years ago now when I was taking an advanced neurology course here at the U of MN. A researcher in the class brought this topic as he was working on it with mice. Fast forward several years and now we have HUMAN data on it!

Why Should I Care?
In general, you can learn by 2 different mechanisms
1) Fear based
2) Positive based

Now this it not in a classical sense, it is just the way I divide them up to illustrate a point.

For fear based learning, it is primarily driven by the amygdala in the brain aka "the fear center."

An example is to have an instructor teach you a deadlift, but now he says to deadlift 315 lbs for 4 reps or else he will shoot you. Ok, so this is an extreme example, but you will probably be able to do it.

A more positive based learning experience would be for him to take you through the steps of learning a deadlift by using positive exercise cues. So instead of putting a gun to your head or yelling "YOU SUCK", the coach would show you the CORRECT way to do the lift and address areas of the lift where you can improve.

Both methods will work, but at what cost? Everything has a cost. My argument is that learning via positive based emotion will have a much lower cost and long term will be better. You may deadlift 315 lb for reps, but you may not get out of bed the next day if it is your first time and you are not Andy Bolton (world record deadlift holder who was rumored to have deadlifted 500lbs the first time he ever did the lift--that bastard!).

The amazing part about this study below is that it hints at a mechanism that may decrease the cost of fear based learning. This could have huge implications for post traumatic stress disorder also as the memories stored could be "retrieved" later with a much lower cost (less anxiety, stress, etc).

Anyone Want More? (Coaches Read Here)
If people are interested in coaching cues based on neurology, let me know. I have a whole presentation already completed. It literally took me quite some time to pull all the literature, do some experiments myself, consult with other really smart trainers and steal their ideas (hey, you think I come up with all of this stuff on my own).

If you are interested, drop a note in the comments section or email me directly. I have not seen this material presented anywhere else and feel it is very valuable.

Beyond extinction: erasing human fear responses and preventing the return of fear

Merel Kindt1, Marieke Soeter1 & Bram Vervliet1

Abstract Animal studies have shown that fear memories can change when recalled, a process referred to as reconsolidation. We found that oral administration of the beta-adrenergic receptor antagonist propranolol before memory reactivation in humans erased the behavioral expression of the fear memory 24 h later and prevented the return of fear.

CONCLUSION: Disrupting the reconsolidation of fear memory opens up new avenues for providing a long-term cure for patients with emotional disorders.