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The Othmer Method and Personalised Brain Training

Neurofeedback London uses what is considered one of the most sophisticated methods of neurofeedback training. Daniel Webster studied each method under direct supervision of its founders: 

 – the Othmer Method / ILF (Infra-Low Training):  aimed at calming the reticular activating system

 – qEEG brain map based Personalised Brain Training

Neurofeedback is a form of complementary therapy and should not be seen as a replacement for conventional medicine.  qEEG brain map-based neurofeedback training takes a more holistic approach to brain functioning, rather than just focusing on medical symptoms.  It is not intended as a form of diagnosis nor medical intervention nor medical advice per the disclaimer.

Brain Maps and Personalised Brain Training

Kaiser Neuromap brain maps show character traits for neurofeedback

The functional connectivity between various brain areas allows us to see vulnerabilities to character traits or behaviour patterns.  

Every Brain is individual and different, therefore Personalised Brain Training neurofeedback

Personalised Brain Training is a neurofeedback training method devised by founders of the field, Barry Sterman and David Kaiser.  

 

qEEG recording of brain waves is analysed to generate a brain map in form of a Kaiser Neuromap

A brain map is an analysis of brain wave behaviour as measured by a qEEG recording.  We record 20 minutes of the brain activities with a 19-sensor qEEG recorder.  There is no stimulation, and contact between the sensors and the head is via an easily removable gel applied to specific points.  From this recording, we can generate a brain map using Kaiser Neuromap software.  

Neurofeedback process illustrated by electrode measurement analysed and transformed into feedback via a movie in visual and auditory form for the preconscious mind to process and adapt its behaviour to in a learning process.

Neurofeedback training is a process where we give the brain feedback about its own activity at a particular cortical site in real time, via visual, auditory or tactile means.  There is no direct stimulus to the brain and the sensors attached are for measurement of cortical EEG, or tiny electrical currents detectable on the surface of our head.  This signal is then amplified and analysed by software in real-time, and this information is used to provide auditory and visual feedback to our brain.  

Neurofeedback Training calms the mind and restores functionality

With neurofeedback training, we can reduce stress, calm the mind and restore cortical functionality. 

Neurofeedback training restores balance and equilibrium between brain and heart

We take a holistic approach to healthy brain self-regulation, rather than categorisation or diagnosis.  In our view, and experience, symptoms resolve when our system is balanced.

Neurofeedback helps restore functional connectivity in key neural networks

 We use a movie of choice as the feedback mechanism – our conscious mind engages with the film, and feedback is delivered by small changes in volume or picture size.  Our pre-conscious mind adapts its behaviour to preserve the more comfortable volume and picture size, and learning occurs.

Neurofeedback is evidence based therapy with a wealth of over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports per PubMed neurofeedback

Neurofeedback is evidence-based.  

There are over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports on PubMed demonstrating efficacy across a number of pathologies. 

Neurofeedback training is safe and non-invasive shown in a picture using Othmer Method

Neurofeedback training is safe, effective and non-invasive.  

There is no direct stimulation of the brain:  We measure brain activity and provide feedback through changes in volume and picture size.  The brain understands this and adjusts its behaviour preconsciously.

Kaiser Neuromap qEEG recording forms basis for neurofeedback personalised brain training

A qEEG recording takes about 45minutes for a 20 minute recording.  We analyse the data with Kaiser Neuromap software which gives us a unique view into character traits and vulnerabilities.  Findings are presented in a separate conversation.  Note this is not diagnosis – issues found are necessary, but not sufficient conditions for a particular attribute and represent vulnerabilities.

Following a Kaiser Neuromap we do Neurofeedback Personalised Brain Training

 We use a movie of choice as the feedback mechanism – our conscious mind engages with the film, and feedback is delivered by small changes in volume or picture size.  

Our pre-conscious mind adapts its behaviour to preserve the more comfortable volume and picture size, and learning occurs. 

Volume changes are slight, not stop-start, and the process is enjoyable. 

neurofeedback training sessions last two hours to capture an entire ultradian rhythm cycle

A two hour training sessions allows us to do 90 minutes of neurofeedback.  This captures an entire ultradian rhythm cycle and corresponds to the approximate duration of feature film movies.  We can start with shorter sessions as appropriate, mainly with children.

 

Forty hours of neurofeedback training is twenty sessions, three per week, over two to three months; intensives with two sessions per day for two weeks

Ideally, we do three or more sessions per week to start with.  We would expect to see responsiveness within the first few sessions and remap after twenty hours or ten sessions.  Generally, we would expect to doing forty hours or twenty sessions over two months, though this can vary. 

We can also accommodate intensives, where we do two sessions per day over a number of days, and have had good results with these.

Neurofeedback training relies on real-time EEG measurement, analysis and translation into feedback

The Othmer Method – Neurofeedback Training

In search of treatment for their epileptic son, the Othmer s had exhausted every avenue until they discovered neurofeedback – a method that finally worked.  As trained scientists, they became involved in the research and development of equipment that could be used by general practices.  As technology improved, the Othmer s were instrumental in harnessing developments to create today’s portable devices, whose interface includes the ability to use games, videos and even virtual reality to make a neurofeedback session entertaining and pleasant.

While early neurofeedback training focused on brainwaves in the classical realm, that is, the frequency bands with the greatest amplitude or power, between 2-45Hz or cycles per second, the Othmer s searched for lower organisational frequencies underpinning the brain’s ability to regulate itself.  

The technical capabilities of the NeuroAmp improved, driven by Bernard Wandernoth’s background as a NASA physicist specialising in amplifying minute signals emanating from distant corners of the galaxy.  This same technology enables us now to measure extremely slow oscillations in the micro-Hertz realm, real-time, and show their activity back to our brain.  

Using the feedback of brainwaves emanating from structures within our reticular activating system, the Othmer Method allows us to train the brain to self-regulate better.  

The goal of this approach is to allow the nervous system to calm down and reset itself onto a better path.  Realising that our nervous systems, which strive to keep us alive and functioning optimally, can get stuck in dysfunctional modes of behaviour, the Othmer approach to neurofeedback centres on training the brain to self-regulate itself optimally, thus promoting healthy functioning.

Good Brain Self-Regulation is the Ability to shift Arousal State to the Right Level for the Situation  – Neurofeedback Trains this Ability

Another approach to understanding self-regulation of the brain is by taking a look at how the brain performs during different levels of arousal.  Each person has their individual arousal and performance curve.  We move up and down this curve over the course of the day as we are confronted with situations.

At the high end, extreme arousal constitutes a hyper-vigilant state mentally, and the physical symptoms to match, e.g. higher heart rate, blood pressure, sensory alertness and readiness to respond.  This is useful in emergencies -“fight or flight” – but ignores necessary rest and recuperation, as well as an awareness of the future and resultant needs for foresight and preparation; it also places unsustainable stress on the body and consequently is not a state that should one should be in continuously.  At the other extreme, a low arousal state is essential for good rest and sleep, but is not suited to the range of demands in our daily routine, which can include times of high levels of alertness, varying degrees of physical preparedness,  repetitive tasks with different concentration requirements, and all kinds of emotional states paired with their concomitant physiology.

The Othmer Method – Training Modalities

The core training protocol in the Othmer Method is Infra-Low, or ILF training.  Here, four electrodes (sensors) are attached with an easily, washable paste to the head and these merely read, or listen to, brainwaves.  It is basically just an EEG reading (no electric current goes to the head), amplified by a device, the NeuroAmp, and fed into a PC with high processing power in order to decypher the signal and allow us to tune into a frequency of choice and reflect the activity there back to the brain in real-time.  

The feedback occurs solely through the video output including audio, and through a teddy bear that vibrates with different strength proportional to the signal.  The conscious mind’s attention is captured by the video we are watching, anything from youtube to Netflix, while the image is subtly resized in a way that reflects brain activity at the frequency we’ve dialed in.  

The subconscious mind understands the image resizing, and that this is a reflection of itself – at that infra-low frequency – which it can influence.  Once we have found the optimal training frequency, the mind calms.  This was discovered through extensive clinical experimentation over the last thirty years.

Aside from finding the optimal training frequency, a process that normally takes up the first few sessions, the other variable we control in the Othmer Method is the placement of the sensors.  

The core training sites address physiological and emotional regulation; body and emotional relaxation and spatial awareness; and conscious issues such as disinhibition, fears and attachments, and impulse control.  

The right brain hemisphere is broadly tasked with regulating core emotions and physical needs, while the left regulates conscious planning and the execution thereof.  We look at the symptom profiles as a whole rather than focusing on diagnosis, and assess which parts of the brain we need to address with training in order to target issues with brain self-regulation.

 

The Othmer Method – Core Protocols:  ILF, Alpha-Theta, Synchrony

There are three core neurofeedback training protocols that form the Othmer Method:

  • ILF – Infra-Low Frequency training –
    • the basic modality with which most issues can be addressed. 
    • Key to resolving physiological arousal issues, instabilities, disinhibitions, and localised issues
    • prepares the brain for alpha-theta and synchrony protocols through physical and emotional calming
  • Alpha Theta training –
    • Trauma resolution, ‘unlearning’ fears and habits, boost creativity and insight. 
    • This involves relaxing conscious control and allowing processing of subconscious memories. 
    • Effective in eliminating triggers from developmental or later traumatic experiences that result in depression, anxiety, PTSD, addictions, etc. 
    • Also shown to improve musical creativity, insight and skill in a study by Imperial College, London, and the Royal College of Music
  • Synchrony 

Neurofeedback Training – The Process is Simple and Pleasant

In a relaxed setting, sitting back in a comfortable chair, Neurofeedback simply involves placing four sensors to the head, they just stick on with an easily washable paste, and measure your brainwaves which are fed into an amplifier.  From the spectrum of brainwaves measured by these sensors, we can then dial into specific frequencies, like a radio, and show the brain what happens there.  

This is done through software that transforms the signal into an output that is imposed on a video, any video, or game that captures the users attention, such as through resizing the image continuously.  While our conscious mind is focused on the screen, and the content of what we are watching, our subconscious perceives the subtle resizing of the image and understands that this is a reflection of itself, and that it can influence it.  This in turn allows it to improve self-regulation, and with the right frequency we are generally looking for a calming effect.

Training is a seemingly passive process – we are consciously occupied with the film or game, while our pre-conscious does the work.

Through repeated training, we help the brain find new pathways and ultimately rewire itself.  Ten, twenty or more sessions are often required to achieve stable and long-lasting results.  We make use of the brain’s innate desire to find an optimal way to function; and it’s ability to rewire neuronal pathways through a process called Neuroplasticity.  For as long as we live, our brain learns, which involves creating new internal connections.  With Neurofeedback – the Othmer Method – we provide the brain with additional information about itself which it uses to optimise its functioning. 

Brain Maps and Personalised Brain Training

Kaiser Neuromap brain maps show character traits for neurofeedback

The functional connectivity between various brain areas allows us to see vulnerabilities to character traits or behaviour patterns.  

Every Brain is individual and different, therefore Personalised Brain Training neurofeedback

Personalised Brain Training is a neurofeedback training method devised by founders of the field, Barry Sterman and David Kaiser.  

 

qEEG recording of brain waves is analysed to generate a brain map in form of a Kaiser Neuromap

A brain map is an analysis of brain wave behaviour as measured by a qEEG recording.  We record 20 minutes of the brain activities with a 19-sensor qEEG recorder.  There is no stimulation, and contact between the sensors and the head is via an easily removable gel applied to specific points.  From this recording, we can generate a brain map using Kaiser Neuromap software.  

Neurofeedback process illustrated by electrode measurement analysed and transformed into feedback via a movie in visual and auditory form for the preconscious mind to process and adapt its behaviour to in a learning process.

Neurofeedback training is a process where we give the brain feedback about its own activity at a particular cortical site in real time, via visual, auditory or tactile means.  There is no direct stimulus to the brain and the sensors attached are for measurement of cortical EEG, or tiny electrical currents detectable on the surface of our head.  This signal is then amplified and analysed by software in real-time, and this information is used to provide auditory and visual feedback to our brain.  

Neurofeedback Training calms the mind and restores functionality

With neurofeedback training, we can reduce stress, calm the mind and restore cortical functionality. 

Neurofeedback training restores balance and equilibrium between brain and heart

We take a holistic approach to healthy brain self-regulation, rather than categorisation or diagnosis.  In our view, and experience, symptoms resolve when our system is balanced.

Neurofeedback helps restore functional connectivity in key neural networks

 We use a movie of choice as the feedback mechanism – our conscious mind engages with the film, and feedback is delivered by small changes in volume or picture size.  Our pre-conscious mind adapts its behaviour to preserve the more comfortable volume and picture size, and learning occurs.

Neurofeedback is evidence based therapy with a wealth of over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports per PubMed neurofeedback

Neurofeedback is evidence-based.  

There are over 2,000 peer-reviewed research reports on PubMed demonstrating efficacy across a number of pathologies. 

Neurofeedback training is safe and non-invasive shown in a picture using Othmer Method

Neurofeedback training is safe, effective and non-invasive.  

There is no direct stimulation of the brain:  We measure brain activity and provide feedback through changes in volume and picture size.  The brain understands this and adjusts its behaviour preconsciously.

Kaiser Neuromap qEEG recording forms basis for neurofeedback personalised brain training

A qEEG recording takes about 45minutes for a 20 minute recording.  We analyse the data with Kaiser Neuromap software which gives us a unique view into character traits and vulnerabilities.  Findings are presented in a separate conversation.  Note this is not diagnosis – issues found are necessary, but not sufficient conditions for a particular attribute and represent vulnerabilities.

Following a Kaiser Neuromap we do Neurofeedback Personalised Brain Training

 We use a movie of choice as the feedback mechanism – our conscious mind engages with the film, and feedback is delivered by small changes in volume or picture size.  

Our pre-conscious mind adapts its behaviour to preserve the more comfortable volume and picture size, and learning occurs. 

Volume changes are slight, not stop-start, and the process is enjoyable. 

neurofeedback training sessions last two hours to capture an entire ultradian rhythm cycle

A two hour training sessions allows us to do 90 minutes of neurofeedback.  This captures an entire ultradian rhythm cycle and corresponds to the approximate duration of feature film movies.  We can start with shorter sessions as appropriate, mainly with children.

 

Forty hours of neurofeedback training is twenty sessions, three per week, over two to three months; intensives with two sessions per day for two weeks

Ideally, we do three or more sessions per week to start with.  We would expect to see responsiveness within the first few sessions and remap after twenty hours or ten sessions.  Generally, we would expect to doing forty hours or twenty sessions over two months, though this can vary. 

We can also accommodate intensives, where we do two sessions per day over a number of days, and have had good results with these.

Neurofeedback training relies on real-time EEG measurement, analysis and translation into feedback
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