Magazine article National Defense

SEAL Team Testing New Headset to Boost Skills

Magazine article National Defense

SEAL Team Testing New Headset to Boost Skills

Article excerpt

* Elite units in the Army and the Navy are using a headset that stimulates the parts of the brain responsible for developing motor skills in an effort to improve strength training, speed and target acquisition.

The Halo Sport headset, developed by San Franciscobased Halo Neuroscience, uses transcranial direct-current technology to deliver an electrical stimulation to the motor cortex that could encourage a more effective workout or recovery period, Mark Mastalir, Halo's chief marketing officer, said at a recent event in Washington, D.C.

The headset looks like a normal pair of over-the-ear headphones with a set of rubber spikes, or primers, that run down the top band and come into contact with the wearer's head. The user wears the headset for 20 minutes prior to beginning his or her workout, but "the real benefit comes when you take it off," Mastalir said.

For the next hour, the user's brain is in a state of hyperplasticity or "hyper-learning," where skills such as sprinting, weightlifting or target-shooting can be honed more quickly, he said. …

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