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Talk:Brain Gym International

Brain Gym International was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
Article milestones
May 4, 2008Good article nomineeNot listed
August 30, 2008Good article nomineeNot listed
Current status: Former good article nominee

Puffery and POV/OR problemsEdit

[1] Adding it at the end of the summary of the criticism makes it seem that this addresses the criticism somehow, violating WP:OR and WP:NPOV.

[2] Seems like just a bit of puffery. Worse is [3].

Again, none of this seems appropriate for the lede. --Ronz (talk) 16:34, 3 April 2013 (UTC)

History & premises & organizationEdit

these sections are sourced entirely from the company's website or their other materials. Company websites and the other materials exist to promote the company and its products; there is no way a section can be NPOV that is sourced entirely from the subject's website. I'll do what I can to create new content from independent refs.


What became the Brain Gym program began when Paul Dennison took John Thie's Touch for Health training around 1970. Dennison worked as a public school teacher and reading specialist in the 1960s, researching more effective ways to help children and adults with learning difficulties. He worked in East Los Angeles with the innovative educator Dr. Constance Amsden, Director of the Malabar Reading Project for Mexican-American Students, which focused on the development of individual sensory modalities (visual, auditory, and tactile skills) for reading instruction.[1] In the early 1970s, Dennison observed how challenged readers at his learning centers had less access to whole-body movement and postural awareness than more adept readers. He realized how some learners used one-sided motions (such as handwriting) at the expense of the non-dominant side, rather than in coordination with it. Seeing how even successful classroom learners were often tense from relying on primarily one-sided motions, he sought simple ways to teach both coordination and differentiation of movement in the classroom.[2]

In 1975, at the University of Southern California, Paul received the Phi Delta Kappa award for Outstanding Research; he was granted a Doctorate in Education for his research in beginning reading achievement and its relationship to cognitive development and silent speech (thinking) skills.[1][3]

Initially Dennison used Touch for Health muscle testing to assess sensory and neurological stress. Later his familiarity with research from behavioral optometry and sensorimotor training showed the effects of movement upon learning " . . . led him to extrapolate this information into quick, simple, task-specific movements.[4]" These movement "solutions" became Brain Gym.

In the early 1980s, Dr. Dennison began a teaching and writing partnership with Gail Hargrove, later to become Gail Dennison. They call their field of study, which they founded during this period, "Educational Kinesiology" (Edu-K). They define Edu-K as "learning through movement".[1]

The Dennisons say that Edu-K draws from the educational philosophy of Jean Piaget and the sensory-integration works of educators Maria Montessori, Anna Jean Ayres and pediatrician Arnold Gesell, as well as the work of movement pioneers F.M. Alexander and Moshe Feldenkrais. In its emphasis on active learning, Edu-K further embodies elements from the educational philosophy of John Holt (How Children Fail), Jerome Bruner (the spiral curriculum), and Carl Rogers (student-centered learning). Since the mid 1980s, the Dennisons have also drawn from the work of Howard Gardner and Thomas Armstrong on multiple intelligences (Visioncircles Teacher's manual, 1986) and, more recently, Armstrong's work on neurodiversity.

Some of the specific Brain Gym activities the program uses have been, according to the Brain Gym International website, developed from Paul Dennison's "knowledge of the relationship of movement to perception, and the impact of these on fine motor and academic skills." Others are adapted from movements he learned during his training as a marathon runner, his study of vision training (learned from developmental optometrists with whom he shared referrals in the 1960s), his study of Jin Shin Jitsu (a form of acupressure), and his study of Touch for Health (a form of kinesiology developed for laypeople by chiropractor John Thie).[5][6]

The Dennisons present their program under its current name in their books, e.g. Brain Gym: Simple Activities for Whole Brain Learning (1986), Brain Gym and Me: Reclaiming the Pleasure of Learning (2006) and Brain Gym: Teacher’s Edition, 1987, 1996, and 2010.[7]

The Brain Gym activities are now used in more than 87 countries; the Edu-K works have been translated into more than 40 languages.[1][3]


In the early 1970s, Paul Dennison hypothesized when readers avoid crossing over the bilateral midline, they inhibit part of their visual field. He observed such learners as reading one-word-at-a-time (not sentences), lacking comprehension, and experiencing visual stress. He used simple movements (later named the Brain Gym(R) activities) to teach alignment of the head, torso, and visual field for an ergonomic use of tools.[8] He further theorized how small motor skills (e.g., eye and hand motion) involving precision for reading and writing, are best developed within a context of whole body (interlimb) and bi-manual coordination.

He has since expanded this premise to say all learning begins with the internalization of physical skills, such as eye-teaming, eye–hand or bi-manual coordination, and interpretation of spatial directions, to name a few. Under stress, the integrating elements of movement are lost; ". . . some individuals try too hard and 'switch off' the brain-integration mechanisms necessary for complete learning[4]" Repetition of especially specific bilateral, contralateral, is said to "promote efficient communication among the many nerve cells and functional centers located throughout the brain and sensory motor system."[9] The 26 Brain Gym activities are designed to integrate body and mind in order to improve "concentration, memory, reading, writing, organizing, listening, physical coordination, and more."[1]

Educational Kinesiology draws on basic anatomy in teaching how body movement occurs along three planes of motion, each plane describing the axis along which an action is performed. These three planes intersect to create three movement dimensions. Brain function is defined in terms of three dimensions: laterality being the ability to co-ordinate the left and right sides of the body, focus being the ability to co-ordinate the front and back of the body, and centering being the ability to co-ordinate the top and bottom of the body. Brain Gym activities are said to work by giving people an experience of connecting the body in these three dimensions. According to Brain Gym, when internal connectivity is increased, people can learn more easily; for example, they can use their lateral movement (left to right co-ordination) to improve their ability to read and think at the same time.[10] As another example, the Belly Breathing activity can be used as a reminder to breathe instead of holding the breath during focused mental activity or physical exertion. The activity teaches how to expand the rib cage front to back, left to right, and top to bottom. They claim that when breathing is shallow, lifting only the scalenes, oxygen to the brain is limited.[5]

Organizational structure

Brain Gym International / the Educational Kinesiology Foundation is a non-profit educational organization, established in 1987 and based in Ventura, California. The names of the members of the board of directors are listed on the Brain Gym website. Brain Gym is a registered trademark of Brain Gym International.[11]

The Brain Gym instructor program is open to anyone. To become qualified as a consultant there is a four-stage training program that consists of fourteen courses of between twenty-four and forty hours each, in which students validate the effectiveness of the 26 for themselves by using intentional movement to improve their own sensorimotor skills and achieve personal goals. The trainee must also complete fifteen case studies and attend six private consultations with a qualified instructor.[12][13]


  1. ^ a b c d e "What is Dr. Dennison's Background?". Educational Kinesiology and Brain Gym UK and Ireland web site. Retrieved 2011-01-24. Cite error: The named reference "about_bg" was defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  2. ^ Switching On: The Whole-Brain Answer to Dyslexia, 1981.
  3. ^ a b "Brain Gym – About". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2011-01-03.
  4. ^ a b Brain Gym: Teacher’s Edition 1996 (p. "A Message to Parents and Educators")
  5. ^ a b "Dennison, Paul E. and Gail E. Dennison. Brain Gym®: Teacher's Edition". Ventura, CA: Hearts at Play, Inc., 2010. Missing or empty |url= (help)
  6. ^ "Brain Gym – FAQ". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2008-08-11. Many of the BRAIN GYM activities, like the Owl, the Elephant, and the Alphabet 8s, were developed from Dr. Dennison's knowledge of the relationship of movement to perception, and the impact of these on fine-motor and academic skills. Others were learned during his training as a marathon runner, his study of vision training, his study of Jin Shin Jitsu (a form of acupressure), and his study of Touch for Health, (a form of kinesiology developed by chiropractor John Thie for laypeople).
  7. ^ "Brain Gym – FAQ". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2008-08-11.
  8. ^ "Dennison, Paul E. and Gail E. Dennison. Brain Gym: Teacher's Edition". Ventura, CA: Hearts at Play, Inc., 2010. Missing or empty |url= (help) (pp 33–34)
  9. ^ "Brain Gym – FAQ". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2008-08-11. BRAIN GYM works by facilitating optimal achievement of mental potential through specific movement experiences. All acts of speech, hearing, vision, and coordination are naturally learned through a complex repertoire of movements. Brin Gym exercises promote connectivity and communication among many internal functional centers, located throughout the brain and sensory motor system.
  10. ^ "Brain Gym – FAQ". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2008-08-15. The Dennisons describe brain functioning in terms of three dimensions––laterality, focus, and centering. Laterality is the ability to coordinate one side of the brain with the other, especially in the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic midfield, the area where the two sides overlap. This skill is fundamental to the ability to read, write, and communicate. It is also essential for fluid whole-body movement, and for the ability to move and think at the same time. Focus is the ability to coordinate the back and front areas of the brain. ... Centering is the ability to coordinate the top and bottom areas of the brain. ... The BRAIN GYM movements interconnect the brain in these dimensions, allowing us to easily learn through all the senses, to remember what we learn, and to participate more fully in the events of our lives. ...
  11. ^ "Brain Gym – FAQ". The Official Brain Gym Web Site. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
  12. ^ "Requirements for Licensure as a Brain Gym Instructor / Consultant" (pdf). Educational Kinesiology Foundation. 2007. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
  13. ^ "Brain Gym Instructor & Educational Kinesiology Consultant Professional Training Track". The Official Brain Gym Website for the UK. Retrieved 2008-08-15.

-- Jytdog (talk) 02:51, 6 November 2016 (UTC)

new refsEdit

found these and am reading and will add content tomorrow:

- Jytdog (talk) 07:33, 6 November 2016 (UTC)

  • at NYT, nothing for "brain gym" (6 articles with other uses) and nor for "Educational Kinesiology Foundation"
  • in WSJ, nothing in WSJ nor for "Educational Kinesiology Foundation"
  • in LA Times, nothing for "Educational Kinesiology Foundation" and lots citing "brain gym"]...the LA Times has a promiscuous search engine. I looked through a bunch of things and didn't find anything. Jytdog (talk) 22:10, 6 November 2016 (UTC)

brain gymEdit

Jytdog, OK add them, but don't remove the e confusion link to brain Balance. They are very similar topics with very similar names. They should NOT be confused.--Taeyebar 23:26, 1 December 2016 (UTC)

added the refs ages ago. nobody but you seems to be confused about those two. This is pseduoscience topic; edit carefully. Jytdog (talk) 23:31, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
  • I KNOW it's pseudoscience, but just wanted to source it. i did so much to remove promotional nonsense from these programs and I'm being reminded it's pseudoscience?--Taeyebar 23:41, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
There are seven refs in the body now. Per WP:LEAD, X only need to be cited if someone contests X. You are not contesting it. And if you want a ref there to CYA, there are seven refs already in the body to pick from to cite there; just tagging it and not using one of the existing refs is just incompetent or lazy. Jytdog (talk) 00:23, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Merge article somewhere or delete?Edit

I'm going to place a NPOV template on this article as a temporary measure; more experienced editors should decide its ultimate fate. It should not remain as it is. In the lede is a bald and unproven marketing claim: 'a series of exercises called "Brain Gym" that improve academic performance'. In the 'Business' section are various false claims: 'a set of physical exercises that improve children's ability to learn and that are based in neuroscience', 'drinking water which increase blood flow to the brain'. OK, criticism /is/ included, but the article is clearly promotional nonsense that some editors have added a bit of balance to. Oops; sign. Clark42 (talk) 15:04, 6 March 2019 (UTC)

I changed my mind and added Advert and Booster templates instead as they seemed more appropriate. Clark42 (talk) 15:14, 6 March 2019 (UTC)

I've removed the really egregious examples I could see, have I missed any?--Launchballer 16:38, 6 March 2019 (UTC)
I changed a bit more about their claims that were presented in Wikipedia's voice.
The topic looks notable. I don't know where we would merge it to.
There's likely been COI editing here (VongolaFamiglia (talk · contribs), PeacefullyCurious (talk · contribs), StudentofMovement (talk · contribs)). --Ronz (talk) 18:09, 6 March 2019 (UTC)

Many thanks to other editors for helping on this; my time is limited. The article is already looking much more realistic. I agree that the topic is notable - the UK government bought this nonsense! Which could be worthy of a section in itself - so yes Merge and Delete are inappropriate. I notice from the Talk section above that other editors made improvements in 2016 - if someone gets time please check the article History to make sure that those improvements weren't undone; if they were the article may need to be semi-protected something. I'll check back again when I get the chance. Cheers; Clark42 (talk) 09:27, 7 March 2019 (UTC)

I think the article is improved enough to remove the templates; I'll do that next, and modify the lede a bit.
Any idea what we should do about the company trademark? It shows up in the Featured box on a Google search, but that's not necessarily a bad thing so long as the visible summary isn't puffery, as it was.
Many thanks. Clark42 (talk) 12:15, 7 March 2019 (UTC)
Return to "Brain Gym International" page.