Brain training has been around for a while, but the market has recently proliferated – there are thousands of brain training apps available for download, which can be pretty overwhelming! A lot of apps have some big claims about their effects, with most boasting improvements to memory, attention, problem-solving, and more – all with accompanying claims to scientific backing.
When it comes down to it, science is still divided on whether brain training games have long-lasting, useful effects. It also depends on the person and the way their brain works, so really, it’s up to you! If you think brain training games have a real effect on you, it can’t hurt to get involved. If you’re looking to give it a try, here are some of the best apps on the market to help you give your brain a workout.
This one is Casper-certified because our founder, Maria, is obsessed with using Elevate to improve her skills! Elevate has over 35 games designed to focus on different areas: reading, writing, speaking, and maths. Their daily training feature lets you choose which areas you’d like to focus on, where you select three to five games to play each day.
A great feature of Elevate is that when you first use the app, you complete a short introduction test, which measures your skills in each of the four areas. Then, every time you do the daily exercises, your scores are recorded and compared against previous scores, letting you track your performance over time. This means you can see if you’re improving and by how much, which is especially useful to see which area you might need to focus the most on.
Elevate is available on both Android and iOS with a free version and a paid premium version.
Lumosity is a very popular app for brain training, and it isn’t hard to see why. The game categories span specific areas of improvement, such as speed, attention, flexibility, and memory, and each category has a bunch of colourful and cute games designed to hone your skills. Each game uses its theme to keep players engaged, such as Memory Serves, where the player is a hotel bellhop who needs to deliver the right bags to the right guest.
Lumosity refers to scientific backing much more explicitly than most brain training apps because they conduct their own studies with Lumos Labs. According to their website, Lumosity uses results from cognitive science to develop their games, which number in the fifties. Like Elevate, Lumosity allows users to compare their scores with past attempts, helping keep users on track by encouraging them to beat their high scores. Their training calendar also keeps a record of which days the user has completed their workout, keeping a record of streaks for the user to build on.
Lumosity is available on both iOS and Android.
So, Duolingo isn’t technically a brain training app – it’s for learning other languages. But it’s well known that learning a language is one of the best ways to keep your mind in shape! While there have been some doubts about whether brain training apps are actually helpful for everyday life, language learning provides great cognitive benefits alongside a real-world applicable skill.
Duolingo offers free courses in 37 languages, from Spanish and German to Esperanto and Navajo. Like the other apps here, advancement in Duolingo is gamified, with short bursts of exercises that let you gain points and compete on leader boards. Streaks are a huge part of Duolingo, encouraging you to keep at it every day – but because the exercises are so short, it’s really easy to take just five minutes out of your day to learn some new vocabulary or practice what you know. It’s a great way to dive into learning a new language!
Duolingo is available on Android and iOS with both free and paid premium versions.
So, there you have it – our favourite apps to keep your brain in shape! There are many out there like it, so if you don’t like using these ones, it should be simple enough to find one that works for you. Enjoy!
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