Your Weekly Dose of #5ThoughtsFriday: A description of what we think is important at BIAMD
(Last Wednesday!)
  #5Thoughts Friday
The "Wedgwood" Edit ion
#5ThoughtsFriday is Powered By :
Here are the 5 things we thought were
worth sharing with you this week:
Photo by  carolyn christine  on  Unsplash
This Article is part of BIAMD's Original Content Initiative, and will become a part of the Member Exclusive content available on the BIAMD Member Portal coming in January.

B ryan Pugh
T he start of a new year brings with it all sorts of long-standing rituals, traditions, and songs. From watching a shiny ball dropped down a pole in Times Square to kissing a loved one (or someone standing nearby) to spending all day watching football or even coming up with a list of resolutions which will hopefully last beyond the next sunrise. However, this year is special in that it invokes a quest for clarity of vision (whether or not you believe it starts the new decade or merely bookends the last one.)  

Whether hindsight or foresight, we all aspire to see 20/20.  

And, now that 2019 has sped by (“Where on earth has the year, gone.”), here it is.  

Some would say that if you thought the previous year was divisive, disruptive, discouraging, and demoralizing, you ain’t seen nothing yet. To read or listen to or watch social media, or any media for that matter, one could easily come away with the feeling that we are in the last days. Guns and flames and storms and screaming heads. Everyone offended. Everyone apologizing. No one apologizing. Make no compromises and take no prisoners. Opinions are truth, and truth is optional.  

It is so very hard to find clarity in any aspect of our daily lives.  

Or is it? 

CLICK HERE to read the rest of Bryan's blog post.

Last year this annual award was re-dedicated in memory of BIAMD's most loving and spirit-filled staff member who lost her battle with brain cancer in December of 2018.
Each year, these awards are presented in recognition of individuals who have made contributions to improving the quality of life for individuals with brain injury.

The Nomination Categories are:

  • Individual with a Brain Injury
  • Family Member / Partner / Friend
  • Healthcare Professional - Working in the Brain Injury Community
  • Supporter / Advocate - Making Contributions in an Official Capacity

Awards will be presented at the BIAMD Annual Conference General Session on Thursday, March 26, 2020, at the Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City, Maryland. 

Nominations should be received by no later than March 1, 2020 to allow us adequate time to select the award recipient and make arrangements for them to attend the awards ceremony.  

Photo by  Sharon McCutcheon  on  Unsplash
Our brains are capable of detecting the location of touch even when it's not directly on the body, new research shows. An intriguing new study indicates that we can sense how an object we're holding comes into contact with something else - almost as if it were an extension of ourselves.

If you're holding a stick that you then use to tap something else, for example, the brain appears to activate a special set of neural sensors to work out what just happened using the vibration patterns as they're sent through our nervous system.
Of course if something we're holding is touched, we can feel the shift in pressure as it's passed on to our fingers – but this latest study shows how we can also figure out the exact location of the contact on the object.

"The tool is being treated like a sensory extension of your body," neuroscientist Luke Miller, from the University of Lyon in France, told Richard Sima at  Scientific American .

Across 400 different tests, Miller and his colleagues got 16 study participants to hold wooden rods, and asked them to try and determine when two taps on those rods were made in locations close to each other.

And the volunteers were surprisingly good at it: they could recognise two touches in close proximity 96 percent of the time.
During the experiments, the researchers were also using  electroencephalography  (EEG) equipment to record the participants' brain activity. These scans showed that the brain uses similar neural mechanisms – specifically in the primary somatosensory cortex and the posterior parietal cortex – to detect touches on both our own skin and on objects we're holding.

CLICK HERE to see if we all have an Invisible Touch, yeh.
Photo by  Audi Nissen  on  Unsplash
Science indicates that the key to peak physical performance
is in your head.
For millennia, athletes have been pushing the bounds of what we think is possible, honing their bodies to become faster and stronger, and to perform for longer periods of time. Historically, endurance was thought of, and measured as, something purely physical—but for the past century, researchers have also sought to understand how an athlete's mental state can play a crucial role in their performance.

The study of the mind-body aspect of endurance started in the late 19th century, when an Italian physiologist named Angelo Mosso conducted his research on muscular fatigue. Mosso was instrumental in figuring out that muscle fatigue was caused by a buildup of “toxic substances” that accumulated in the body after exertion and prevented the muscle from contracting efficiently—a phenomenon we understand today as the lactate threshold. But Mosso, in his seminal work La Fatica (or Fatigue), postulated that muscular fatigue was volitional as well—in other words, influenced by a person's will or mental state.

Mosso revealed in La Fatica that, in his own experience as an alpine climber, his physical performance during a climb decreased after too many hours of intense mental concentration. To test his theory, Mosso performed a fatigue test on two fellow lecturers, noting that after six hours of lectures and oral exams, they showed a decrease in muscular contractions and muscular force. When Mosso presented his findings at the first International Conference of Physiologists in Basel, Switzerland, he forever changed how the world understood athletic endurance. 

CLICK HERE to see the importance of mental strength.
2) What We are Reading to We Think
You Might FInd Interesting
"Clearly, nature calls to something very deep in us. Biophilia, the love of nature and living things, is an essential part of the human condition. Hortophilia, the desire to interact with, manage, and tend nature, is also deeply instilled in us. The role that nature plays in health and healing becomes even more critical for people working long days in windowless offices, for those living in city neighborhoods without access to green spaces, for children in city schools, or for those in institutional settings such as nursing homes. The effects of nature’s qualities on health are not only spiritual and emotional but physical and neurological. I have no doubt that they reflect deep changes in the brain’s physiology, and perhaps even its structure."

From the best-selling author of  Gratitude  and  On the Move ,  a final volume of essays that showcase Sacks's broad range of interests--from his passion for ferns, swimming, and horsetails, to his final case histories exploring schizophrenia, dementia, and Alzheimer's.

CLICK HERE to read more about this wonderful book.
1) Quote We Are Contemplating...

"Let our New Year's resolution be this: we will be there for one another as fellow members of humanity, in the finest sense of the word."

Have you ever clicked on the pictures posted at the end of every #5ThoughtsFridays? Try it. You might learn something fun!
Photo by  Wout Vanacker  on  Unsplash

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  Thanks for reading! Have a wonderful weekend.