Insurer Sees Games as Boost for Old Brains
'Mental fitness' software improves reaction time, peripheral vision
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 8, 2009 3:00 PM CDT

(Newser) – An experiment by Allstate Insurance and a San Francisco software startup that aims to use computer games to improve the mental health of all ages is getting good reviews, the Chronicle reports, including from one local who says improved reaction time and peripheral vision saved him from an accident. “I’m 100% convinced,” the 57-year-old says.

Allstate hopes it can use the software to reduce the number of accidents its drivers get into. And it’s not alone in trying to upgrade the brain. USA Hockey has commissioned a similar brain-fitness program for its players, as has the Army for soldiers. “Physical fitness matured as an industry 50 or 60 years ago,” explains one researcher, “and the same thing will happen with brain fitness.”