Use the Force to combat ADHD

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to try out an alternative to medication in the treatment of ADD/ADHD. The idea is that ADD causes some people to generate brainwaves in an abnormal pattern.

When a normal child tries to read or concentrate, he increases the amount of beta waves in certain parts of his brain. ADHD children don’t do this. Instead of increasing beta waves, they increase theta waves, the daydreaming brain wave. That means that where other children are concentrating harder to complete a certain task, ADHD children are drifting off. (source)

The machine I was hooked up to measured my brain waves and presented me with a video screen with an airplane on it. When I was concentrating well and producing beta waves, the plane would go faster. If I lost focus, the plane would slow down. I marveled at the idea and wondered whether someone could simply exercise their brain until they were no longer prone to ADD type behaviors. Of course the equipment involved made it difficult to find a location that could provide this sort of treatment, and the costs were rather higher.

Interestingly, now it seems to be available as a home game. With a Star Wars theme.

Yes I’m serious. has put up for sale the Star Wars Force Trainer, for about $120. As a Star Wars fan, I felt obligated to check it out. I stopped dead in my tracks when I got midway through the description.

Using dry sensor technology, the Force Trainer can determine the differences between the alpha, beta, gamma and delta waves present in your brain. You can control these different brain ‘states’ by using your ability to focus and to concentrate. A micro-chip inside the Force Trainer then uses an algorithm to figure out which brain state you are in and then decides how to raise or lower the ball based on that state.

Sound familiar? I don’t know for certain what makes the ball go up or down, but if it’s keying in on beta waves, then isn’t it doing the exact same thing that I tried out in at the SMART workshop?? And if that’s the case… could this actually be a home version that ADD students could use to help train them to focus their concentration on demand?

I know it sounds crazy, but this just might be the most valuable toy a parent could buy for their ADD inclined student.

Now… when will we see a Bluetooth version that hooks into an iPhone?

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By | 2009-08-21T13:32:05+00:00 August 21st, 2009|Conferences, General News, Musings, NECC, S.M.A.R.T., Tech|9 Comments

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  1. Steve Dembo 8/21/2009 at Aug 21, 09 | 2:28 pm

    Use the Force to combat ADD/ADHD. No, I’m not joking.

  2. Michael Kaechele 8/21/2009 at Aug 21, 09 | 6:01 pm

    Interesting blog by @teach42 about using a Star Wars game to help ADHD

  3. Online G3 8/22/2009 at Aug 22, 09 | 9:48 am

    Use the Force to combat ADHD – by @teach42

  4. Mike Lawrence 9/4/2009 at Sep 04, 09 | 5:59 pm

    Currently reading – Use the Force to combat ADHD – by @teach42

  5. Twitted by WillSwartz 9/9/2009 at Sep 09, 09 | 9:18 am

    […] This post was Twitted by WillSwartz […]

  6. Bill Swartz 9/9/2009 at Sep 09, 09 | 10:09 am

    Whoa. Alternative to AD/ADHD medication is a game you can play?! Worth checking out:

  7. Ben Wilkoff Network 9/14/2009 at Sep 14, 09 | 1:13 pm

    [from sabestian] Use the Force to combat ADHD – Teach42

  8. Mark Smith 5/11/2010 at May 11, 10 | 11:08 pm

    Ok I will try that AD/ADHD combat…

    With ADHD

  9. Robert Heard 10/25/2010 at Oct 25, 10 | 8:32 am

    Please do your research as there is not evidence that ADD or ADHD even exists. I am not trying to offend you but please check it out.

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