Boomers Embrace Brain Fitness Craze
LAS VEGAS, March 19, 2009 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ —-Despite the economic downturn, the brain fitness sector of the economy is growing rapidly. The brain fitness market, with estimated 2007 sales of more than $225 million, has been growing at more than 50 percent per year – driven by the aging of the baby boom cohort.
"Just five years ago, brain fitness was a little known concept," said Jeff Zimman, one of the founders of the brain fitness industry, "but with leading edge baby boomers advancing in age to their mid-60s, it has become a national phenomenon."
Zimman is Chairman of Posit Science, a leading provider of computerized brain exercises. He spoke today at the Boomer Summit, an annual gathering of business leaders focused on the aging baby boomers.
"Brain fitness has entered our national conversation," Zimman said. "In 2004, just 27 news articles were written on brain fitness, but by last year, national awareness was nearly 50 times greater, with more than 1300 articles in major news publications."
Zimman tied that growth in awareness to advances in the science of aging and cognition, citing increased scientific publication on cognitive training. Posit Science technology has been shown to be effective in more than 30 published articles in leading science and medical journals.
The most recently published study showed that participants in the Posit Science Brain Fitness Program had clinically significant improvement in their cognitive abilities. They more than doubled their brain processing speed, had improvements in memory and attention equal to about what an average older person loses over 10 years, and noticed significant improvements in every day activities. The study of 487 healthy older adults was led by investigators at the Mayo Clinic and the University of Southern California.
The first report from the study is publishing in the April 9th issue of The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, and an advance copy is now available online.
"It’s worth noting that two other studies of Posit Science technology published this month, which also show how cognitive training can change the trajectory of aging," Zimman said. "Those two studies dealt with how training can reduce the mortality rates of older drivers and can reduce depressive symptoms."
"But what’s most important in the middle of this month, which is Brain Awareness Month," Zimman continued, "is that consumers are getting what they want. Consumers want programs that are fun and engaging and that are proven to work."