The Importance of Working Memory for Athletes

basket3Working memory is the ability to hold things in your head and shift attention between them as you solve a problem or deal with a situation.

Because athletes have to take in and hold onto different sets of information on the field or the court, working memory can be a tremendous asset, impacting their ability to make split-second decisions and be effective under stress. It allows athletes to recognize the best action quickly, and take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves.

For example, working memory is what allows a basketball player to dribble the ball, pay attention to his defender and one or two teammates at a time, all while evaluating whether he can or should shoot the ball.

Some research suggests that working memory capacity may be the deciding factor between good and great in many disciplines, including sports. With a larger working memory capacity, an athlete can execute more skills at the same time, in addition to executing them more efficiently.

If you are an athlete, learn how Optiminds brain fitness programs, developed by Dr. Jane Stewart, can help you expand your cognitive capacity and memory skills by calling us today at (248) 496-0150 or email us at: And be sure to visit our website at


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