Brain Gym®

Developmental experts have known for more than eighty years that movement enhances learning. Beginning in the 1970s, Southern California educator and reading specialist Paul E. Dennison, Ph.D., built on this knowledge by bringing specific movements into his learning disabilities clinics. Dr. Dennison researched these movements, simplified them, and created techniques to make them effective for everyone. In collaboration with his wife and partner, Gail E. Dennison, he developed a whole new way of understanding the learning process. This new field is known as Educational Kinesiology (Edu-K for short) & the new movements are called the Brain Gym® movements.

To explain how Edu-K works, the Dennisons describe human brain function in terms of three dimensions: laterality, focus, and centering. Successful brain function requires efficient connections across the neural pathways located throughout the brain. Stress inhibits these connections, while the Brain Gym® movements stimulate a flow of information along these networks, restoring the innate ability to learn and function with curiosity and joy.

The Laterality Dimension pertains to the relationship between the two sides of the brain – especially in the midfield, where the two sides must integrate. Laterality skills are fundamental to reading, writing, listening, or speaking. They are essential for the patterning of whole-body movement, and for the ability to move and think at the same time.

The Focus Dimension describes the relationship between the back & front areas of the brain. Focus affects comprehension – the ability to blend context and details into a full personal meaning and to understand new information in terms of previous experience. ADD or ADHD are related to the inability to focus.

The Centering Dimension concerns the connection between the top & bottom structures of the brain. Centering enables us to harmonize emotion with rational thought. Stress can disturb centering & equilibrium, leaving us tense & out of sorts; when we’re centered, we feel more grounded & organized.

People of many nationalities enjoy the Brain Gym® movements in classrooms and businesses worldwide, as a tool to integrate the brain before learning, work, or sports activities, as well as during breaks.

Brain Gym® benefits include improvements in learning, vision, memory, expression, and movement abilities, in both young people and adults. In the classroom, teachers typically report improvements in attitude, attention, homework, behavior & academic performance for the entire class.