Yes, even if you learn a new word, “neuropracticity” (the intentional application of principles leading to neuroplasticity in rehabilitation practice), you are changing your brain. How do we make neuroplasticity more tangible and less theoretical? Consider looking for opportunities to incentivize, constrain, or create avoidances – giving learners a clear pathway toward neuroplasticity – in a manner that best suits their cognition, motivation, and preferences:
- Constraints – Forced behavior in thought or action that is guided through restrictions imposed for the sake of learning. (an armsling on an unimpaired arm, patching a more functional eye, placing the unimpaired foot further out in front of a patient on sit to stand, etc).
- Incentives – Numbers to beat, rewards in the form of food, protecting finances, free time, praise, etc.
- Avoidances – Removal of a negative: fall, pain, fear, injury, embarrassment.
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