The role of neurofeedback in the ongoing evolution of elite performance psychology: Applications of theory, research, and technology to clinical and military populations

Jonathan Metzler, USA
Adam ONeil, Pinnacle Performance Center, USA
Leslie Sherlin, Neurotopia, Inc, USA

Theme: Mental training/interventions

Program ID: SYM-23

Presentation: October 5, 2013 11:30 am - 12:30 pm

Room: Belle Chasse


The utilization of psychophysiological measurement, specifically quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) and neurofeedback, has been widely researched for the purposes of treating clinical disorders (e.g., Depression: Hammond et al., 2005; TBI: Collie et al., 2006; Autism: Kouijzer et al., 2009; ADD: Lubar et al., 1997), performance enhancement (e.g., Vernon et al., 2005; Hammond et al., 2007; Sherlin et al., 2011), and military training (e.g., Janelle and Hatfield, 2008; van Erp et al., 2009; Peniston et al., 1991). Recently, research trends have emphasized the role that neurofeedback plays in the development of personal resource management and sleep regulation, particularly how it relates to the effects on optimal performance (e.g., Johnston et al., 2010). While research (e.g., Harung et al., 2011) and application (e.g., Hammond, 2011) of neurofeedback has grown, so too have technological advancements (Sherlin et al., 2012). Despite being based on well-established psychological theory (i.e., operant and classical conditioning), and despite having decades of valid and reliable research on the utility of qEEG and neurofeedback with various populations, a gap between the fields of sport and performance psychology and psychophysiology has remained. However, recent scientific trends from both disciplines highlight the importance of integrative, multidisciplinary collaboration to better understand the various factors that contribute to elite human performance (e.g., Larson et al., 2012; Aoyagi et al., 2011). This symposium will highlight new technical advances, and will critically examine the practical applications of qEEG and neurofeedback with elite performers, offering an example of its use in US military settings. Two experts from each field will discuss their experiences in bridging the gap between disciplines, and will address concerns and questions from the audience. The authors hope that the symposium will inspire discussion on multidisciplinary collaborations, how each discipline potentially complements one another, and to critically consider the costs and benefits of such collaborations.

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