How to Improve Your Brain During a #TubeStrike

Here we are, another week, another tube strike!

If, like me, your ‘alternative route’ last time was a disaster, and you found yourself on a packed-out bus, squashed against the window, thinking ‘whyyyy?’, then we have something that might make your journey a little better.

Whether your commute is no different, or your average travel time has increased ten-fold, why not use the time to improve your brain?

It’s known that brain performance is enhanced by regular mental exercises, including crosswords and sudoku. Packed with illuminating insights and dozens of witty, and often, perplexing puzzles, How Puzzles Improve Your Brain both helps to create a healthier brain, whilst explaining how the puzzles are changing it.

“These mind-training exercises will make you brighter than you’ve ever been.” – Mail on Sunday
How Puzzles Improve Your Brain

 

“Thoroughly well-researched…Very entertaining… It made me think and play in ways I had not done before and actually explained what my brain was doing whilst attempting these puzzles.” – Puzzlemad

Kim Scott, (puzzle master for Scientific America) has designed puzzles that can target, and improve, specific areas of the brain while Richard Restak, a leading neuroscientist, describes the science behind how they reshape and strengthen the brain.

So make the most of your journey and attempt to improve your brain with some of Kim Scott’s puzzles below….(answers will be at the end of the post – no cheating!)

  1. First things first, a test for your ‘Visual Thinking‘. How many squares of any size are in the figure below?

puzzles-1

2. Next, something to test your ‘Mathematical Thinking‘….

puzzles-2
3. For something a little more wordy, simply complete each analogram by choosing two words from the list below. For instance, ARM is to HAND as LEG is to FOOT, because the FOOT is attached to the end of the LEG in the same way that the HAND is attached to the end of the ARM. Each word is used only once.

ARCHERY                                  HEART                                 RUNNING
BOW                                            HOUSE                                 SHEET
BREAD                                        ICE                                        SWEATER
CHEDDAR                                  LEG                                       TARGET
CHEESE                                      PAPER                                 TIMES
CRUST                                        PEANUT                               VIOLIN
ELEPHANT                                PLUS                                     WATER
FOOT                                           ROOF                                    YARN
analograms

4. And finally, something to test your memory…(I think this is what I need to work on sometimes)
puzzles-4Puzzled out? We hope not! There are plenty more puzzles (282 pages of them to be exact) to be found in How Puzzles Improve Your BrainWhat’s more, the puzzles are divided into three sections devoted to different skills – memory, perception and cognition – so it’s easier for you to be able to target a particular area of the brain that you might want to improve.

“One of the world’s leading neurologists… A fascinating study of how to ‘stop the rot’ and have a lot of fun doing it.” – Avanti

So, if you find that you’re bored of the Evening Standard’s Quick Crossword, or asking yourself ‘what can I do to keep my brain working at its best?’, get yourself a copy of How Puzzles Improve Your Brain, and by the next #tubestrike, your brain will be on top form!


 

ANSWERS

  1. There are 30 squares.
  2. The number of combinations is too big to imagine in your head. So ask a simpler question: How many nights can three people sit in a different combination of three chairs each night? It’s not hard to list all six combinations:
    ABC
    ACB
    BAC
    BCA
    CAB
    CBA
    – and this fact helps you to solve the larger puzzle. Consider the starred chair. If person A sits in the starred chair, there are six ways to seat the remaining three people in the remaining three chairs. Similarly, if B sits in the starred chair, there are six ways to seat the remaining three people. The 4 possible people in the starred chair times 6 ways to seat the remaining three people = 24 combinations.
  3. puzzles-3ARM is to HAND as LEG is to FOOT
    APPLE is to JUICE as CHEDDAR is to CHEESE
    MOUNTAIN is to PEAK as HOUSE is to ROOF
    LOAF is to BREAD as SHEET is to PAPER
    EGG is to SHELL as BREAD is to CRUST
    MOUSE is to CHEESE as ELEPHANT is to PEANUT
    XYLOPHONE is to STICK as VIOLIN is to BOW
    LIGHTNING is to ELECTRICITY as SWEATER is to YARN
    BOWLING is to PINS as ARCHERY is to TARGET
    SQUARE is to DIAMOND as PLUS is to TIMES
    DIAMOND is to GRAPHITE as ICE is to WATER
    PUZZLE is to BRAIN as RUNNING is to HEART
  4. puzzles-5
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s