Summary of Using Failures, Movement & Balance to Learn Faster | Huberman Lab Podcast #7

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00:00:00 - 01:00:00

This video discusses how making errors and learning from them is essential for the brain to change and improve. It discusses how this is especially important during early childhood, when the brain is still learning how to link its different maps of experience. The video also discusses how the brain can be just as plastic in adults, provided there is a serious incentive for the plasticity to occur.

  • 00:00:00 This podcast discusses how to change one's nervous system for the better by taking specific, deliberate actions.
  • 00:05:00 The video discusses how the brain controls movement by sending electrical signals to lower motor neurons (which control muscle contraction) and upper motor neurons (which control movement). It goes on to talk about how the central pattern generators (CPGs) are responsible for walking and other movements.
  • 00:10:00 The human brain can change its behavior through adaptive changes, provided that the changes are different enough from the behaviors that the person is already familiar with. Huberman discusses how behavior can change the brain and how to access neuroplasticity in order to learn or unlearn specific information.
  • 00:15:00 This video discusses the principle of neuroplasticity, which is the ability of the brain to change in response to experiences and training. It discusses how errors and making errors are the key to activating neuroplasticity, and how this can be used to improve various aspects of skill.
  • 00:20:00 The brain is incredibly plastic, able to change in response to its experiences up until the age of 25. After that, the brain becomes less plastic and must rely on different mechanisms to engage plasticity as an adult. The brain is particularly plastic during infancy and early childhood, when it is learning how to link its different maps of experience. The superior colliculus is a key structure in this process, aligning different parts of the brain so that the information from one sense is integrated with information from another sense. This video discusses the importance of making errors in order for the brain to change. By learning how to make errors and unlearn bad habits, the brain can better learn new information. This is especially important during early childhood, when the brain is still learning how to link its different maps of experience.
  • 00:25:00 The key experiment done by Eric Knudsen, now retired, showed that if one wears prism glasses that shift the visual field, eventually there will be a shift in the representation of the auditory motor maps too. This is powerful because it allows us to move through space and function in our lives in a very fluid way. The plasticity that we experience as juveniles is based on making errors, and this is what allows us to shift our maps.
  • 00:30:00 The Knudsen Lab found that adults can tolerate smaller and smaller errors over time, but that incremental learning is essential for achieving massive shifts in one's map representation.
  • 00:35:00 The Knudsen Lab's papers show that the adult nervous system is capable of a lot of plasticity, but the key is to do it in smaller increments to maximize learning. The example given is that someone wanting to learn free throws should aim to continue practicing until they are hitting the point of frustration.
  • 00:40:00 The Knudsen Lab found that the plasticity of the brain can be as robust as in a young person or animal subject, provided there is a serious incentive for the plasticity to occur. This study is important because it shows that how badly we need or want the plasticity determines how fast that plasticity will arrive. This is important because most people are hitting a limit because the need to change is not crucial enough. This study has important relevance to people who are battling addiction, for instance.
  • 00:45:00 This video discusses how ultradian rhythms, or 90-minute cycles, help break up our day and allow us to learn best. It also mentions that when something bad happens, we will have a lifetime memory for it.
  • 00:50:00 This video discusses how negative experiences can be wired into us quickly, how dopamine is released in response to positive or negative experiences, and how this can help us learn more quickly.
  • 00:55:00 Huberman discusses how failures, movement, and balance help learn faster. He argues that children learn more quickly than adults because their brains are in a "performance-enhanced brain milieu" which allows them to focus better and learn more cognitively. Huberman then discusses limbic friction, which is a more nuanced concept than stress. He argues that it captures information that is found in textbooks about stress and neurobiology and has important implications for learning.

01:00:00 - 01:25:00

This video discusses the importance of neuroplasticity in learning, and how movement and balance can help to facilitate it. The speaker also discusses how adults may have difficulty accessing neuroplasticity due to changes in the brain, and offers suggestions for ways to increase it.

  • 01:00:00 The Huberman Lab discusses the importance of failures, movement, and balance in learning. Using a physiological sigh, for instance, can help to reduce anxiety and fatigue, while panoramic vision can help to focus and engage in learning. When too alert or too sleepy, however, it can be difficult to access neuroplasticity. Activities that can help to move up or down the autonomic arousal arc include those that bring you to the starting line for learning.
  • 01:05:00 The video discusses the three main planes of movement and how the brain relies on proprioception (sensory feedback from the body) to know where it is. It explains how the vestibular system (the system that senses motion and balance) helps the brain to access neuroplasticity, or the ability to form new memories and skills via practice. The video then goes on to discuss how errors in movement (such as when someone is off-balance) can lead to the release of neurochemicals that allow for better learning and more opportunities for error. Finally, the video discusses how being in a "flow state" (a state of intense focus and concentration) can help to facilitate the release of neurochemicals and facilitate learning.
  • 01:10:00 The speaker discusses how motor practice can create neurochemical changes that make you better at learning quickly, regardless of your age. The key is to create novelty in the motor experience, by being either in a new position or slightly unstable.
  • 01:15:00 The speaker discusses the importance of neuroplasticity, how it is accelerated by making errors, and how movement and balance are important for learning. He also discusses how adults may have difficulty engaging in neuroplasticity due to structural changes to the brain and reduced levels of dopamine, acetylcholine, and norepinephrine. He suggests ways for adults to increase neuroplasticity, including through load-bearing exercise, movement in different dimensions, and high contingency.
  • 01:20:00 The speaker discusses how neuroscience can help us understand how to access neuroplasticity and other benefits of learning. He emphasizes the importance of understanding the mechanisms underlying these phenomena, and encourages listeners to put questions in the comments section of the YouTube video.
  • 01:25:00 The discussion in this month's episode of the Huberman Lab Podcast focuses on the topic of neuroplasticity, which is the ability of the nervous system to change and adapt over time. Several supplements that are useful for enhancing sleep, neuroplasticity, and other aspects of health are mentioned, and a special offer is offered for those who purchase any of the supplements mentioned.

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