The brain is divided into two hemispheres, the right and left, and both sides are specialized to process information differently. With this in mind, the director of the Laboratory of Cerebral lateralization of this university, Ruth Propper, and his team began an experiment in which participants were divided into groups and clenched his fist right or left at specific sequences while trying memorized data or to remember.
For the same, were based on a theory called hemispheric asymmetry model of encoding and retrieval (HERA, for its acronym in English) that stands as some types of memory encoding processes involve the left hemisphere, which is the side that is active to insert the information in the brain.
Moreover, in the processes of memory retrieval, when one tries to remember an event or action-activates the right hemisphere. “In our daily lives, both hemispheres are processing information, but sometimes, the side that is most useful for a specific process and do not let the other side get involved,” said the researcher.
The participants were divided into different groups to try to memorize a list of 72 words that would then have to remember. A clenched right fist for 90 seconds before memorizing the words and then clenched left fist at the same time to retrieve the list, other performed the sequence backwards, a third group left fist clenched both times and no quarter did it in no time.
The group following the HERA model line-pull the right fist tightly while recording and left while recalls performed better than the other. Propper recognized that the most notable difference who pulled his right fist which was labeled with a fist clenched left to store.
However, results were less significant compared to the group that clenched his fists in no time. “You can not conclude definitively that the memory will work better if you press the right fist in a given sequence, but it works best if you make a fist in reverse,” he said.
Right hand to recruit left hemisphere neurons
What is believed is that squeezing the right fist neurons are selectively recruiting left hemisphere, although they are activating the motor areas of the brain, there are indications that this activation can stimulate other areas of the hemisphere that are involved in memory.
The next step in the Laboratory of Cerebral Lateralization is testing with a larger group and extends to visual stimulus memories, such as remembering a face, or spatial tasks, like remembering where you put your car keys.
Montclair State Professor’s Research Helps Soldiers Get a Grip on Memory