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Classes to boost brain power offered

If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.

That’s common wisdom where physical exercise is concerned. And seniors at the Jewish Family Service (JFS) of San Diego are finding that it applies just as well to mental discipline.

JFS has become the first county organization to offer “brain fitness” classes to adults age 60 and older.

The Posit Science Brain Fitness Program Classic, a six-exercise, 13-week computer program designed to improve memory, is being offered from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays through June 3 at the JFS University City Older Adult Center at Congregation Beth Israel, 9001 Towne Centre Drive. Cost is $80 for the entire program, or $2 per class.

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The new brain fitness program has proven results, said Craig Lambert, senior director of older adult services for JFS.

“It’s clinically proven that auditory (sound) speeds pick up by 131 percent,” Lambert said, noting that about 80 percent of people age 60-plus who complete the course have average memory capabilities equivalent to someone 10 years younger, and in some cases, even more.

“It’s a holistic approach, part of being well, along with nutrition and exercise.”

Lambert said brain fitness is a movement that’s sweeping the nation. It also fits well with the service’s mission to address the four pillars of health: exercise, nutrition, stress reduction and mental health.

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One of the principles underlying brain fitness is the notion that the brain isn’t fixed, but rather can form new neural pathways so learning and growth can continue to be developed.

“Brain fitness programs are where physical fitness was 30 years ago,” Lambert said.

“In 10 years, the vast majority of people will be engaged in some form of it.”

Reservations for the introductory brain fitness presentation and classes can be made online at

www.jfssd.org

or by contacting Patricia Frosio at (858) 637-3247 or

patriciaf@jfssd.org

.