by Melinda Pillsbury-Foster
The use of Biofeedback and its enhanced brother, NeuroFeedback are increasing in usage across America today, but few are aware of the history of usage within American's military. There, these optimized the performance of the top level of pilots and other critical personnel.
Such technologies came into use by the United States Military at West Point over thirty years ago, under the supervision of Col. Louis S Csoka as head of the Center for Enhanced Performance at the Military Academy.
Used in this way, the techniques provide an edge for performance which allows already skilled and mentally gifted individuals to hone their reactions and skills to a fine edge. The last two generations of American's finest benefited from these technologies as part of their training.
Then, use began to move into other arenas, this process amplified by the opening of Apex Performance by retired Col, Csoka who founded Apex Performance The Edge in Excellence, located in Charlotte, North Carolina. Csoka uses these same technologies to assist athletes, top level businesspeople, and those in government, seeking to enhance their performance in their areas of specialization.
The benefits reported by users and advertised on the Peak site include strengthening for adaptive and agile thinking, “ the ability to control and direct your thoughts and self-talk on command in order to maintain a positive and effective mind-set that leads to applying creative solutions to complex problems in a timely manner.” These boil down to self-confidence, lack of anxiety, ability to work without being impacted by stress, along with the ability to focus.
Athletes who have benefited from the Peak Program include Billy Cundiff, NFL Kicker Baltimore Ravens and Chad Pennington, NFL Quarterback Miami Dolphins. Their goals became achievable.
Sometimes returning to 'normal' is a goal which seems unachievable. This does not have to be the case.
In 2011 Staff Sgt. Justin Roberts, suffering PTSD so severe he said, “I’d sleep for two hours, and then go without sleep for two days.” He returned home in 2009, “a zombie,” by his report. After treatment with Neurofeedback by Major Michael Villanueva, Roberts said, “It made me closer to normal than I ever dreamed I’d be,” Roberts said. “I’m the biggest believer in this treatment.”
The use of these technologies began in war. They can also bring peace within us and our families.