What is Biofeedback Training?
Let's start with a definition of biofeedback and glimpse some biofeedback applications. This the scientific and practical field where psychology and physiology meet. Biofeedback training approaches can give us new and powerful insights into the status of an individual's nervous system - specifically we mean the Autonomic and Central Nervous systems. In simple terms, the NeXus technology and computers allow us to obtain an "inside view" of our brain and body as we think, feel and perform the tasks of life. This has applications in many aspects of human performance and health.
With biofeedback, sensors are attached to various parts of the body. The sensors send signals from the body to the NeXus unit which captures them, processes them and "feeds back" information to the user as sound or visual information which varies with the changing form of the signals. The nature of the feedback can be changed to encourage a learning process as the user literally gets intouch with his or her feelings.
So what? Well there are dozens of biofeedback applications whether the aim is dealing with health issues or to seek higher performance. Applications include dealing with stress, Insomnia, Traumatic Brain Injury, ADHD, stroke, traumatic brain injury and more. We know that by using biofeedback technology we can help people achieve greater balance in their Nervous System which is fundamental to improved health, human behaviour and even peak performance.
Beyond the applications with particular disorders this biofeedback technology is already being picked up by those seeking higher performance - in elite sport and in business. Athletes and Business Leaders increasingly train with Biofeedback because they seek a competitive edge in an increasingly challenging environment. Top sports teams and National Athletics organisations use the NeXus biofeedback systems we feature on this site. To learn more about applications in Sport see Biofeedback in Sport.
The Mind Media products we offer are high-end and high fidelity - (the NeXus 4, NeXus 10 and NeXus 32 are class-leading devices) but beyond the hardware, what matters is how easily can you work with these physiological signals?
BioTrace+ software is an intrinsic part of each professional system. BioTrace+ is incredibly powerful and is what makes these systems stand out from the competition. We believe there is no merit in having systems that need a PhD simply to deploy them. You care about effective use for your applications and so do we.
One very nice feature is the ability to support dual screens for training situations where the person being trained can view something suitable for behaviour change whilst the operator can view the fine details of the raw sensor data.
A formal definition of biofeedback?
Gaining awareness of physiological functions we are not normally consciously aware of by means of electronic measuring instrumentation .. and then presenting (feeding back) this information in a compelling way - normally involving multiple audio, visual and even tactile channels in order to train someone to acquire voluntary control of that function. Once trained, special equipment is not needed.
The Mind Media biofeedback systems can measure a wide range of parameters such as heart rate, muscle tension, temperature, respiration, skin conductance, and brain waves. Depending on the NeXus model many physiological signals can be observed and fedback simultaneously.
By using these physiological signals as the source of feedback under the guidance of a trained health professional, people can learn to change their behaviour. It's not therapy in our view but training - augmented by technology.
Biofeedback at home
We are excited to be able to offer The Pip biofeedback device as part of our portfolio.
This is a small, discreet device that helps anyone to learn to manage their stress anywhere they like.
The Pip is held between the finger tips and it detects changing Electrodermal activity (EDA) whose instantaneous value is indicative of our state of relaxation or stress. The Pip links by Bluetooth wireless to your apps on your IOS or Android phone or tablet.
Four Apps are provided that use your changing stress levels to influence progress in engaging ways that encourage involvement and allow you to track your progress.
The Apps include
- The Loom - using relaxation to transform landscapes
- Relax and Race - a race against stress you can win by calming your mind
- Stress Tracker - monitor changing stress levels in real time
- 4 Steps to Mindfulness - Present moment meditation with mindfulness. (Developed in conjunction with Dr Jeffrey Schwartz to teach you how to use minfulness in everyday life)
It is ideal for anyone who has a need to manage stress or learn what a peak performance state feels like; business executives, athletes, students preparing for exams and actually anyone that wants to deploy the benefits of biofeedback but doesnt need the complexity and scope of the NeXus range. If you have just 5 minutes to spare you can take advantge of the Pip.
Now My Pip is live!
My Pip is a cloud platform for better living, providing more detailed insights into your stress levels. Each Pip owner can have a number of free accounts. This means that each owner could for example share a Pip device with other family members.