You can improve your memory by practicing

Training memory: exercises for everyday life

It is normal for memory to deteriorate with age. Nevertheless, seniors can do a lot to keep their gray cells fit. But the performance of the brain can be trained - and that incidentally in everyday life.

Older people love to do crossword puzzles or sudokus in the newspaper. Others deal with puzzle stories to keep their heads in shape in a playful way and to improve their memory skills. But brain teasers and brain jogging alone are not enough to train the memory sustainably. If you want to be mentally fit in old age, you have to do more.

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For a better memory: design exercises individually

Effective brain training includes, above all, breaking down stuck habits and trying something new. But there are also specific training options to improve memory and memory.

If you enter the search terms "seniors", "memory training" and "exercises" on the Internet, you will find exercises that can be downloaded free of charge. However: "You have to be aware that a certain training session does not improve your entire memory," says Beatrice G. Kuhlmann, junior professor for cognitive psychology at the University of Mannheim. Depending on where there is a problem in the thinking apparatus, the methods and exercises must also be designed.

Good to know: It used to be the opinion that the brain automatically loses its efficiency with age and thus the forgetfulness of old age increases. New findings in brain research have now proven that this is not the case. Like a muscle, the brain can also be trained and strengthened. Even at the age of 70 or 80, it can still perform well and learn new things.

Strengthen name memory with magazines

If you want to practice remembering names with the associated faces, you can, for example, look at a magazine with the photos of people depicted there, study the corresponding names - and later cover the captions and retrieve what you have read from memory. "Successful memory training is also always concentration and attention training," says Andrea Friese. She is the educational director at the Federal Association for Memory Training (BVGT). According to her, many problems with memory and retentiveness are concentration problems.

Forgetfulness can have many causes and can be a symptom of various diseases. (Source: Source: Image material: GettyImages, processing: t-online)

Targeted memory training for the brain

The ability to concentrate can be increased through targeted perception training, say memory researchers. If you are looking for suggestions for exercises at home, you can also attend courses for holistic memory training and learn the methods. "They are now a permanent feature in continuing education institutions such as adult education centers or family education centers," says Friese.

According to her, thinking flexibility can also be trained in between through memory exercises in everyday life. For example, you can look for a name and an activity for each letter of your first name. For example at A: Anni works. If you have problems remembering names, you can combine a person's name with their characteristics, as Kuhlmann says: "Maybe Ms. Baker has red hair, then you can imagine a baker at the oven in a red apron to remember that . "

Against forgetfulness of old age: Diligent practice pays off

According to Kuhlmann, there is very good evidence in brain research that older adults get better at many cognitive tasks, i.e. thinking tasks, when they practice. "Improvements in other cognitive tasks, so-called transfer effects, are rarely observed," explains Kuhlmann.

Researchers agree that cognitive skills cannot be enhanced or increased. "Rather, one seems to be able to learn to deal better with the specific requirements of a certain task." Therefore, Sudoku only improves the ability to solve these puzzles. Games and puzzle stories do not help the memory of names or general memory.

Exercise promotes blood flow to the brain

Anyone who wants to do something for their memory in old age should not only rely on memory training, but also keep the body moving. This is pointed out by Erhard Hackler from the German Senior League in Bonn. "Regular exercise increases blood flow and oxygen supply to the brain, and it also improves thinking and memory," says Hackler.

Important NOTE: The information is in no way a substitute for professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors. The contents of t-online cannot and must not be used to independently make diagnoses or start treatments.