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Effect of Audiovisual Stimulation on the Psychophysiological Functions in Track and Field Athletes

  • Institut Physiology and Fundamental Medicine, Russia, Novosibirsk


In 18 to 23 year old athletes specialized in field and track athletics, the psychophysiological status (cognitive, psychoemotional, and neurodynamic indicators) and the spectral power of the main EEG rhythms, and the heart rate variability prior to and after the course of audiovisual stimulation (AVS) training (the experimental group) were studied as compared with athletes not receiving AVS (the control group). It has been shown that the AVS training sessions in the experimental group caused improvements to the psychoemotional (the levels of anxiety and neuroticism decreased, while the motivation to achieve success and the hardiness level increased), cognitive, and neurodynamicindicators (the volume of mechanical memory and the speeds of attention switching and simple visual motorresponses increased, while the variation of anticipatory and delayed responses to a moving object becamereduced). Increases have also been recorded in the high frequency EEG α2 subrange rhythm power and the parasympathetic nervous system activity, while the autonomic regulation contour activity was enhanced, and more efficient heart activity at rest was formed after the AVS training course in the experimental group compared to the control. This leads to the conclusion about a positive effect of the AVS training course received by athletes engaged in track and field athletics on their psychophysiological parameters and autonomic regulation mechanisms.
ISSN 03621197, Human Physiology,
, Vol. 41, No. 5, pp. 532–538. © Pleiades Publishing, Inc.,
Original Russian Text © M.S. Golovin, N.V. Balioz, R.I. Aizman, S.G. Krivoshchekov, 2015, published in Fiziologiya Cheloveka, 2015, Vol. 41, No. 5, pp. 90–97.
The goal of all athletes in training for competitions
is to prolong their optimal psychophysiological condi
tion. The systems functioning in the body of athletes
endure significant strains by the end of competition
seasons [1]; therefore, there is a variety of stimulation
and rehabilitation methods to improve athletic perfor
mance, including the method of audiovisual stimula
tion (AVS) [2–5]. The rhythmic audiovisual stimula
tion is the exposure to the stimuli of different modali
ties (visual and auditory) at the frequencies of brain
biorhythms, which makes it possible to influence the
biological activity of the brain and the functional state
of some systems of the body. AVS is known to affect the
level of cortical activation through the brain modula
tion systems and to shape the induced cortical bioelec
trical activity that determines a human psychophysio
logical state [6–10]. The higher psychic processes are
believed to remain undisturbed by the application of
the AVS method that only creates the conditions to
facilitate the voluntary regulation of psychic functions
and autonomic responses, due to the formation of a
certain level in the brain activity and the optimization
of nervous processes in the cerebral cortex [4]. This
allows the coordination of the regulatory mechanisms
of visceral functions under psychoemotional and
physical loads, as well as to optimize the adaptive and
rehabilitation responses to extreme exposures. There
are data that AVS also acts on the emotional sphere
and is a pathogenic method for the correction of psy
chosomatic disorders [11].
Despite a great number of studies on the effects of
audiovisual stimulation on the human body, there are
not as many studies as necessary on the AVS effects on
the psychophysiological state and the autonomic reg
ulation mechanisms in the field of sports in order to
develop some generally accepted stimulation technol
ogies applicable at different training stages.
In light of the above considerations, the goal of this
research was to study the effects of the audiovisual
stimulation training course on the cognitive, psychoe
motional, and neurodynamic indicators, the power of
the main brain EEG rhythms, and the heart rate vari
ability in athletes engaged in cyclic sports.
The participants of the threestage study were
65 trackandfield athletes (of the first and second
sports qualification categories and candidates for the
Effect of Audiovisual Stimulation
on the Psychophysiological Functions in TrackandField Athletes
M. S. Golovin
, N. V. Balioz
, R. I. Aizman
, and S. G. Krivoshchekov
Novosibirsk State Pedagogical University, Novosibirsk, Russia
Research Institute of Physiology and Fundamental Medicine, Novosibirsk, Russia
National Research Tomsk State University, Tomsk, Russia
Received March 12, 2015
—In 18 to 23yearold athletes specialized in fieldandtrack athletics, the psychophysiological sta
tus (cognitive, psychoemotional, and neurodynamic indicators) and the spectral power of the main EEG
rhythms, and the heart rate variability prior to and after the course of audiovisual stimulation (AVS) training
(the experimental group) were studied as compared with athletes not receiving AVS (the control group). It has
been shown that the AVS training sessions in the experimental group caused improvements to the psychoe
motional (the levels of anxiety and neuroticism decreased, while the motivation to achieve success and the
hardiness level increased), cognitive, and neurodynamic indicators (the volume of mechanical memory and
the speeds of attention switching and simple visualmotor responses increased, while the variation of antici
patory and delayed responses to a moving object became reduced). Increases have also been recorded in the
highfrequency EEG
subrange rhythm power and the parasympathetic nervous system activity, while the
autonomic regulation contour activity was enhanced, and more efficient heart activity at rest was formed after
the AVS training course in the experimental group compared to the control. This leads to the conclusion
about a positive effect of the AVS training course received by athletes engaged in trackandfield athletics on
their psychophysiological parameters and autonomic regulation mechanisms.
: audiovisual stimulation, trackandfield athletes, cognitive and neurodynamic indicators, bioelec
tric activity of the brain, heart rate variability
Vol. 41
No. 5
masters of sports) aged 18–23 years, assigned to the
first health group, engaged in trackandfield athletics
and specialized in middledistance running. The
training sessions were scheduled six times a week. The
running load in different intensity zones was 185 to
225 km per month. The athletes were divided into the
control (
= 40) and the experimental (exposed to
= 25) groups. The groups were matched with
respect to age and the sports skill level. The study
lasted from January to March of 2014 in both groups.
The audiovisual stimulation was realized using a por
tative NOVA PRO audiovisual stimulator (United
States). The AVS method is based on the delivery of
binaural beats and light flashes at a specified frequency
of the signal. It has been shown that the AVS method
that stimulates the auditory and visual analyzers
affects the frequency of bioelectrical rhythms of the
brain [12, 13]. The training stimulation sessions were
performed with eyesclosed at the 24h intersession
interval. The “moderate relaxation” program was used
at a predominant stimulation frequency of 3–13 Hz
with the duration of 25 min when red light flashes and
double binaural beats were generated, respectively,
through diode eyeglasses and headphones. The
applied AVS program used the following frequencies
during brain stimulation: 13 Hz for the first 2 min with
a subsequent fall to 8 Hz and a slow 7min decrease to
4 Hz, then a gradual shift towards 3 Hz with a subse
quent rising up to 8 Hz. In the end of the session, the
frequency of signals gradually returned to 13 Hz.
At the first stage
(background), the psychophysio
logical state was diagnosed in athletes under the fol
lowing tests [14]: sociopsychological adaptation
according to Osnitsky; assessment of psychic states
according to Eysenck; state and trait anxiety accord
ing to Spielberger–Khanin; the state of aggression
according to Bass–Darky; motivation for success
according to Ehlers and Mehrabian; and stresstoler
ance level; and personality type according to Eysenck.
The following psychophysiological parameters
were assessed, using the integrated athlete health
assessment software (Informregistr certificate
no. 16366) [15]: the capacity of mechanical and imag
inary memory, the speed of simple visualmotor
response (SVMR), the speed of attention switching, as
well as the level of hardiness and life satisfaction. We
used the NSPsychoTest hardware–software complex
(NeuroSoft, Ivanovo, Russia) to perform psychophys
iological and psychological tests and record auto
nomic and emotional responses. The obtained test
results were distributed according to the following
blocks: psychoadaptive, psychoemotional, cognitive,
neurodynamic (Table 1).
EEGs were recorded using a multimodal com
puteraided BOSLAB complex (Novosibirsk, Russia),
using the monopolar
lead. The earlobe electrode
was used as a reference electrode. The
site was used
due to the
activity characteristics in the parieto
occipital region, which were the most stable and least
variable when repeatedly measured [16–18]. EEGs
were recorded at rest with the eyes closed (2 min) and
in the eyeopening tests (30 s). The electromyogram
was recorded at the occipitofrontalis muscle to control
eye movements. The analysis of electroencephalo
graphic data selected artifactfree EEG epochs, which
were fractioned into 4s segments and subjected to the
fast Fourier transform (
) in the band of 3–20 Hz,
using the Hann window. The output data were ana
lyzed using the specialized WinEEG software (Mitsar,
St. Petersburg, Russia) developed according to the
accepted signal processing standards and represented
as a table of EEG spectral power with a step of 1 Hz.
We isolated and analyzed the
rhythm (4–7 Hz),
rhythm (8–13 Hz),
rhythm (8–10 Hz),
(11–13 Hz), and
rhythm (14–30 Hz) ranges. The
boundaries of the
rhythm ranges were established
individually, depending on the frequency of the maxi
peak and a decrease in the wave power in
response to eyeopening on the left and right of the
The heart rate variability (HRV), a marker of the
autonomic regulation mechanism, was studied
according to the methodical recommendations devel
oped by a group of European and American experts
[19]. The electrocardiographic signal was recorded in
a supine position (for 5 min) in standard lead II with a
VNSMicro hardwaresoftware complex for investi
gating the autonomic nervous system (NeuroSoft,
Russia). The stress index (SI), 30–90 arbitrary units
(arb. units), was taken as the main criterion for the
express assessment of the predominant type of auto
nomic regulation [20].
At the second stage
, the audiovisual stimulation
(AVS) training course was conducted in the experi
mental group; it included 20–22 sessions performed at
24h intervals.
At the third stage
(after the completion of the AVS
training course), we assessed the AVS effects on the
psychoemotional and neurodynamic parameters, as
well as the personal adaptive potential characteristics
and specific changes of the EEG and HRV parameters
in the experimental group against the control (without
AVS training).
The results were treated by the generally accepted
mathematical statistical methods, using Student’s test
for the case of parametric samples and the Wilcoxon–
Mann–Whitney nonparametric criterion for variables
that were not normally distributed, and considered
statistically significant at
. This program of
studies was approved by the Ethics Committee of the
Novosibirsk State Pedagogical University (NSPU) as
part of planned studies of the Physiology of Ontogen
esis ScientificEducational Center (SEC) and by the
Ethics Committee of the Research Institute of Physi
ology and Fundamental Medicine (RIPFM). All sub
jects gave their informed consent to participate in the
investigations performed in conformity with the Dec
laration of Helsinki (1964).
Vol. 41
No. 5
GOLOVIN et al.
Psychoadaptive block.
The athletes of the studied
groups did not differ in psychoemotional indicators at
the start of the experiment. The dynamics of the inves
tigations (January–March) in the control group dem
onstrated a decrease in the indicators, such as the
external control, the motivation to achieve success,
and the level of hardiness, along with a simultaneous
increase in the indicator for internal control. We
believe that these changes in the control group were
caused by a growing pressure of training and competi
tive loads on the psychic and physiological reserves in
athletes from the beginning of the winter season to its
end (Table 1).
The results of the sociopsychological adaptation
assessment after the completion of the AVS training
course in the experimental group showed a weaken
ing in the internal control against its baseline level
(Table 1), whereas some personal adaptive parame
ters, such as hardiness and the motivation to achieve
success, did not change significantly.
Comparison of psychoadaptive intergroup parame
ters showed that the group taking the AVS training
course had considerably higher indicators of hardiness
< 0.05) and motivation to achieve success (
< 0.05),
which indicated more successful resistance to stress, a
decrease in the internal tension, and a higher adaptive
potential compared to the control (Table 1).
Psychoemotional block.
No significant differences
have been observed in the interseasonal indicators in
the dynamics of the investigations (January–March)
in the control group. The selfassessment of psychic
states (the Eysenck test) after the AVS training course
Table 1.
Changes in the psychophysiological status of athletes control and experimental (AVS) groups (
Block Indicator
Control group AVS group
January March before
training after
block, points
Adaptation 75 ± 1.6 75.1 ± 2.1 71.5 ± 3.1 71.1 ± 3.1
Internal control 57.6 ± 1.0 60.1 ± 0.8* 58.6 ± 1.6 55.2 ± 1.6*
External control 14 ± 1.4 10.7 ± 1.6* 12.6 ± 2.2 12.6 ± 2.2
Motivation to achieve success 142 ± 2.7 135 ± 2.5 * 152 ± 4.6 149 ± 4.6
Hardiness 132 ± 4.7 120 ± 6.1* 127 ± 6.1 133 ± 6.0
block, points
State anxiety 19.2 ± 1.6 19.8 ± 1.8 23.5 ± 1.8 18.3 ± 1.8*
Trait anxiety 32.2 ± 1.5 33.2 ± 1.6 34.1 ± 1.4 35 ± 1.3
Frustration 5.7 ± 0.5 5.5 ± 8.0 5.1 ± 0.7 3.4 ± 0.7*
Stressresistance 34.2 ± 1.0 34.3 ± 1.6 33.4 ± 1.5 34.8 ± 1.6
Neuroticism 11 ± 0.9 12 ± 1.2 9.5 ± 0.8 9.6 ± 0.9
Physical aggression 4.2 ± 0.3 4.1 ± 0.3 4.5 ± 0.4 4 ± 0.5
Indirect aggression 3.9 ± 0.3 4.1 ± 0.4 4 ± 0.4 4.4 ± 0.4
Irritation 3.1 ± 0.5 3.7 ± 0.4 3.4 ± 0.4 3.7 ± 0.5
Negativism 1.7 ± 0.3 1.8 ± 0.3 2.3 ± 0.3 2.6 ± 0.3
Verbal aggression 6.1 ± 0.3 6.1 ± 0.4 6.1 ± 0.3 7.1 ± 0.3*
Cognitive block,
Volume of mechanical memory, points 5.8 ± 0.3 6.7 ± 0.2* 5.9 ± 0.4 7.5 ± 0.4**
Volume of imaginative memory, points 8.5 ± 0.2 8.2 ± 0.3 8.6 ± 0.2 8.5 ± 0.2
Speed of attention switching, s 48.5 ± 1.9 46.1 ± 3.2 49.3 ± 3.9 38.7 ± 3.9**
Neurodynamic block,
Simple visual motor response (SVMR), ms 182 ± 4.4 178 ± 3.4 183 ± 3.5 163 ± 3.5*
Reaction to a moving object (RMO)
of coincidence, points 1.3 ± 0.2 1.4 ± 0.2 1.6 ± 0.2 2.7 ± 0.2**
Range of variability in the time
of anticipation and delay (RMO) 353 ± 22 352 ± 20 322 ± 18 173 ± 18*
Significance of differences between the January and March indicators in individual groups: *
< 0.05, **
< 0.01. Significance of differences
between groups in March:
< 0.05.
Vol. 41
No. 5
(hereinafter, the AVS group) in the experimental group
has revealed a decrease in the level of state anxiety (
0.05) and frustration (
< 0.05). We specially mention
that the level of verbal aggression grows in the AVS
group (
< 0.05) (other forms of aggression manifesta
tion did not change significantly). The possible causes
of this effect will be discussed below. Thus, after the
completion of the experiment we found a certain
number of intergroup differences in some psychoemo
tional indicators, which play an important role in the
athletic practice during the precompetition training,
competition, and subsequent rehabilitation periods.
Cognitive block.
The analysis of cognitive parame
ters in the AVS group revealed positive effects of this
training course, such as an increased volume of
mechanical memory (
< 0.01) and faster attention
switching (
< 0.01). In contrast, there were no
changes in the volume of imaginative memory and the
speed of attention switching in the control group of
athletes (Table 1), although an increased volume of
mechanical memory was also observed by the end of
the experiment. Thus, the conducted study has shown
more expressed improvements in the cognitive func
tions in the AVS group, compared to the control.
Neurodynamic block.
As a result of training ses
sions, according to the tests of SVMR and a reaction
to a moving object (RMO) in the AVS group, changes
have been found in the balance between the excitation
and inhibition processes in the cerebral hemispheres,
which was expressed in an increased number of coin
cidences in the RMO (
< 0.05), as well as in a signifi
cant reduction in the range of fluctuations between the
time of anticipatory and delayed responses and the
SVMR time (
< 0.05). No significant differences have
been found in the interseasonal indicators in the con
trol group.
Analysis of the brain bioelectrical activity
(Table 2)
has shown significant changes in the individual
rhythm subranges: increases in the power of the
rhythm in the AVS group (
0.05). No changes have been found in the control
group. No significant changes relative to the back
ground measurements took place in the characteristics
of the
rhythm and
rhythm powers by the end of
the experiment in either group. Thus, we can conclude
that the AVS training course changed some EEG
pa rameters of the brain and this manifested itself in the
increase in the power of
waves corresponded to the
frequencies used in the AVS sessions.
Heart rate variability.
It has been established that,
after the AVS sessions, the sympathetic regulation
effects and the contribution of the central levels of con
trol to the regulation of HR decreased in athletes (mode
amplitude, AMo%; and stress index, SI) (Table 3). We
observed the effect of parasympathetic regulation and
the enhancement of the autonomous regulatory con
tour (standard deviation of NN intervals, SDNN; root
mean square of successive differences, RMSSD; and
variation range). AVS also contributed to greater effect
of respiratory waves on the heart rate, forming a more
economical work of the heart. No such changes have
been observed in the control group.
The results of the study have shown that the AVS
effect creates marked changes in the cognitive, psycho
emotional and neurodynamic spheres of athletes,
which help optimize the activity of the functional sys
tems participating in the formation of an athlete’s peak
condition [21–23].
First of all, one of the positive effects is that the
application of AVS reduces the state of tension and
anxiety, thus improving a general psychoemotional
condition of athletes. This is confirmed by the ques
tionnaire data that reflect the found differences
between the indicators of anxiety, frustration, and
neuroticism in the experimental and control groups.
In general, the obtained differences indicate an
increase in the level of emotional stability, better feel
ing of quietness and balance after the AVS training ses
sions. The AVS sessions also helped to extend the per
sonal adaptive potential, which was expressed in
increased values of the indicators characterizing har
diness and motivation to achieve success. At the same
time, the balance between the excitation and inhibi
tion processes was disturbed by the end of the winter
training season in the athletes of the control group, the
motivation to achieve success and the level of hardi
ness were falling, which can be explained by a growing
tiredness and exhaustion as a result of study and train
ing loads by the end of the winter season. The fact that
training and competitive loads cause substantial psy
choemotional changes in athletes has been mentioned
by some authors [24, 25]. Our results also agree with
Table 2.
Dynamics of the EEG
rhythm power indicators in athletes of the control and experimental (AVS) groups (
Power indicators
for main rhythms
Control group AVS group
January March before training (January) after training (March)
17.8 ± 1.5 20.9 ± 2.5 14.8 ± 1.4 16.4 ± 1.7
25.4 ± 3.8 22.9 ± 3.2 26.7 ± 3.3 34.0 ± 3.5*
Significance of differences between the January and March indicators in individual groups: *
< 0.05.
Vol. 41
No. 5
GOLOVIN et al.
the data that the AVS training sessions can alter the
parameters of actual selfassessment and lower the
level of trait anxiety [9, 11, 12]. We should also add
that, according to the literature data, an improvement
in the psychoemotional condition after the AVS train
ing course is correlated closely with the strengthening
of the immune status [26].
The observed growth of the values of the “verbal
aggression” indicator in the experimental group
causes interest, and this can be considered from two
viewpoints. On the one hand, verbal aggression is
treated in psychology as a negative sign that reflects a
general growth of aggression in the contemporary
society, especially, among the youth, but on the other
hand, as Il’in notes [1], the sportrelated aggression is
an aggressive behavior regulated by sports rules, which
is a necessary precondition for success in a competitive
activity. We believe that the increased indicator of ver
bal aggression in the experimental group in our case
reflects a general precondition for more successful
performance of athletes and can be regarded in this
context as an adaptive sign.
Of interest are the results on the AVS effect on
changes in individual bioelectrical activity parame
ters, in particular, the
rhythm power. It is known
that the
rhythm is given an important functional
significance in the processes of attention, memory,
emotions and motivation [23, 27–31], successfulness
in cognitive performance [30, 32–34] and optimal
functioning [35–39], i.e., the parameters whose
improvement took place after the AVS course. An
rhythm power is observed in the AVS
group in the eyeopening test in March, compared to
January, whereas this parameter tended to decrease in
the control group. It is not excluded that, on the one
hand, the obtained intergroup differences could be
explained by the impossibility to show an increase in
activity with eyesclosed by the control group’s
subjects, due to tiredness and increased psychoemo
tional tension by the end of the winter training season.
On the contrary, the enhanced power of waves in the
individual highfrequency
range after AVS can be
an indicator of decreased general tension and
improved functional state of the central nervous sys
tem, which is accompanied by a growth of the regula
tion efficiency of cognitive processes, increasing the
volume of mechanical memory and the speed of atten
tion switching and improving the simple visuomotor
response indicators in the AVS group of athletes.
The changes in the HRV indicators observed after
the AVS training course, which reflected the enhanced
parasympathetic effects and the increased activity of
the autonomic regulatory contour over the central
mechanisms, corresponded to the general hypothesis
of an AVSgenerated relaxing effect. This effect can be
used in training courses for recovery after hard training
and precompetition sessions. In contrast to the data
obtained in the AVS group, the cumulative activity of
neurohumoral influences and the contribution of res
piratory waves to the variability formation significantly
decreased in the control group, which can be
explained by the exhaustion of the parasympathetic
regulation reserves during training sessions in the end
of the training season. The values of the vagosympa
thetic balance and centralization index indicators can
point in the control group at an increased tension in
the regulatory systems.
On the basis of our studies, we can suggest that both
an excessive activation of brain structures due to stress,
anxiety, and aggression and an insufficient activation
Table 3.
Heart rate variability in the athletes of the control and experimental (AVS) group (
Methods Indicator
Control group AVS group
January March before training
(January) after training
Temporal analysis SDNN, ms 62.9 ± 3.1 52 ± 3.2* 62.4 ± 3.8 71 ± 5.2
RMSSD, ms 54.1 ± 4.4 40.8 ± 3.1* 53 ± 4.7 73 ± 7.4*
Spectral analysis Total power (TP), ms
4169 ± 350 2993 ± 315* 3620 ± 311 5919 ± 653*
Very low
(VLF), ms
1377 ± 165 1142 ± 202 1601 ± 289 1774 ± 308
LF, ms
1215 ± 145 1310 ± 232 1272 ± 219 1428 ± 270*
HF, ms
1516 ± 223 967 ± 182* 1329 ± 213 2297 ± 340*
Va r i a t io n
pulsometry Mo, s 1.00 ± 0.02 0.99 ± 0.03 0.96 ± 0.04 1.00 ± 0.03
AMo, % 32.8 ± 1.62 40.3 ± 2.2* 32.7 ± 1.8 26.2 ± 1.2*
RT, s 0.33 ± 0.01 0.28 ± 0.02* 0.32 ± 0.02 0.41 ± 0.02*
SI, arb. units 54.6 ± 4.7 75.1 ± 11.8 53.7 ± 8.8 39.4 ± 5.8
Mo, mode; AMo, mode amplitude; RT, response time; SI, stress index. Significance of differences between the January and March in
dicators in individual groups: *
< 0.05, **
< 0.01. Significance of differences between groups in March:
< 0.05.
Vol. 41
No. 5
due to the development of tiredness and the absence of
motivation to acquire new skills and mobilize the
maximum of adaptation reserves in the body of ath
letes reflect their nonoptimal functional condition
[40]. The level of psychoemotional condition has a sig
nificant effect on the functional level of the systems
ensuring the autonomic supply under psychophysical
loads, primarily, the mechanisms of cardiovascular
regulation. The audiovisual stimulation helps to
ensure the psychophysiological adequacy of the
response to the total set of specific factors met in sports
activity, upgrade the effectiveness of professional
activity, and eliminate with extra loads on the systems
of autonomic supply.
A significant number of intergroup differences in
the psychoadaptive and psychoemotional indicators
(anxiety, internal control, the level of psychopathiza
tion or frustration, neuroticism, the motivation to
achieve success, and hardiness) have been observed
after an AVS training course. The experimental AVS
group demonstrated improvements in cognitive and
neurodynamic indicators (the volume of mechanical
memory, the speed of attention focus switching, and
the balance between nervous processes and the speed
of a simple visuomotor response) compared to the
control. The AVS training course increased the power
of EEG
highfrequency subrange, which did not
occur in the control group. The AVS increased the
parasympathetic activity in the autonomic regulation
of the heart, enhanced the effect of the autonomous
regulatory contour, increased the effect of respiratory
waves on the heart rate, and shaped more efficient
work of the heart. Thus, the AVS training sessions can
be considered in the practice of sports as a way of pro
ducing a psychophysiological effect on athletes for
their more successful rehabilitation after loads, better
adaptation to quickly changing conditions during
sports sessions and precompetition training.
This study was performed under a state contract for
provision of services (project code 3111).
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Translated by N. Tarasyuk
... Audio-visual stimulation (AVS) is presentation of auditory and visual stimuli at the frequencies of brain biorhythms, which makes it possible to modulate the biological activity of the cortex and the functional state of particular systems of the body [1]. AVS is one of the promising methods of non-drug correction of functional disorders [2] and is successfully used for normalization of human psychophysiological state [3], in the integrated therapy for psychogenic disorders [4], in the correction of maladaptive psychic states in extreme professionals [5], and in the therapy for insomnia in elderly people [6]. ...
... The analysis of published data showed that almost all investigations of AVS effects, including those listed above [1][2][3][4][5][6][7], were carried out with the first type of stimuli (open-loop). At the same time, in some publications it has been reported of a very promising but yet insufficiently studied approach to organization of different types of stimulation is the closed-loop methodology, when sensory stimuli are automatically adjusted to the current bioelectrical processes of a subject [8][9][10]. ...
... It has been found that AVS provides the intensification and improvement of regeneration processes [5][6][7]. It has also been shown that AVS has an optimizing effect on the psychofunctional state of athletes and provides the optimization of excitation and inhibition processes in brain cortex, the improvement of emotional, cognitive and neurodynamical parameters [8], the enhancement of the effect of autonomous regulation contours on cardiac activity, and a decrease in the level of the main adaptive stress hormones [9][10][11]. The set of these changes [9] is accompanied by a significant increase in aerobic physical working capacity (PWC 170 test), which is an integrated parameter of physiological reserve (PR) in athletes [12]. ...
... We observed an increase in aerobic physical working capacity (PWC 170 ) and more effective functioning and improvement of circulatory system adaptation (CR and TI decreased, while RI increased) after AVS training; no similar changes were observed in the control group ( Table 1). The data indicate that the functional reserve of the cardiovascular system is increased after AVS, which has been found to be caused by psychophysiological changes [10] and hormonal and metabolic processes [9]. ...
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We studied intra- and inter-system structural interactions between functional, psychophysiological, and biochemical processes in athletes after audiovisual stimulation (AVS). We used multiple linear regression and correlation analysis after AVS to investigate the formation of new relations between the nervous, hormonal, cardiorespiratory, and metabolic systems. AVS training leads to an increase in physical working capacity (PWC170) and in the number of its correlations, e.g., with the amplitude of alpha-rhythm, resting heart rate (HR), concentrations of thyroxine, phosphorus, glucose, bilirubin, and triglycerides, antioxidant status, and the level of life satisfaction, which indicates the elevation in inter-system integration processes at different functional levels. An increase in the number and effects of factors contributing to PWC170 (chronoinotropic reserve, lung capacity, reaction of individual α-rate power depth, reaction to the moving object, and the concentrations of glucose, creatinine, bilirubin, and thyroxine) eventually resulted in higher PWC170. This indicates that the rate of synchronization between the studied parameters increases under the influence of sensory impact, which results in the improvement of adaptive capacity and provides a lower cost of adaptation to physical loads at the competitive stage of sports training.
... С этой точки зрения внимания заслуживают аппаратнопрограммные комплексы на базе технологии аудиовизуальной стимуляции, ко торая основывается на способности голов ного мозга человека естественным образом синхронизировать свои ритмы с ритмом пе риодических внешних стимулов визуальных и аудиальных, что может быть использовано для достижения определенного терапевтиче ского эффекта. В основе данного эффекта ле жат принципы ритмической организации сти мулов, согласно которым воздействия даже малой интенсивности способны вызывать значительный эмоциональный и психофизио логический эффект, выражающийся в изме нении психологических, психофизиологиче ских и клинических показателей [2,5]. ...
Relevance. Currently, great importance is attached to the medical and psychological rehabilitation of military personnel performing combat missions in conditions of armed local conflicts. For improving medical and recreational activities, comprehensive approach seems promising. Intention – to study the dynamics of the indicators of the mental status in servicemen with prior exposure to combat stress in the process of medical and psychological rehabilitation in an outpatient clinic and to assess the clinical effectiveness of a complex of medical and recreational measures. Methodology. The study involved 330 servicemen exposed to combat stress factors. Of the total number of those surveyed, 54 servicemen with a reduced adaptive potential by Baevsky were selected and divided into experimental and control groups. Patients in the experimental group underwent medical and psychological rehabilitation in an outpatient clinic including audiovisual stimulation and progressive muscle relaxation according to E. Jacobson; patients in the control group received standard treatment. Research methods: clinical diagnostics, anthropometry, physiometry, psychodiagnostic testing, mathematical and statistical data processing. The median, upper and lower quartile (Me [Q1; Q4]) are presented. Results and Discussion. According to the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory by Ch. D. Spielberger, servicemen exposed to combat stress factors and having reduced adaptive reserves showed a decrease in trait anxiety both in the experimental and control group: from 29 [27; 31] to 26 [22; 29] (p = 0.001) and from 29 [25; 35] to 27 [22; 33] (p = 0.025), respectively. Depressive symptoms in both groups were within reference limits, and their dynamics in the process of medical and psychological rehabilitation did not reach statistical significance. In the structure of the integral indicator of post-traumatic stress disorder in servicemen exposed to combat stress, the symptoms of hyperactivation were of the greatest importance. The results of the analysis of the dynamics of this indicator in the experimental group revealed its statistically significant decrease from 20 [18.5; 22] to 17 [14.5; 21] at p = 0.015. Conclusion. As a result of the study, based on the analysis of the dynamics of the indicators of the mental status in servicemen exposed to the factors of combat stress, the clinical effectiveness of the proposed organizational model of medical and psychological rehabilitation in an outpatient setting was proved.
... However, there is no consensus regarding the training sessions frequency (sessions per week) in NFT. Previous NFT studies applied one-session-per-week Mikicin 2015Mikicin , 2016Mikicin et al. 2015;Ring et al. 2015), two-session-per-week (Perry et al. 2011;Raymond et al. 2005;Shaw et al. 2012), three-session-per-week (Faridnia et al. 2012;Paul et al. 2012;Rostami et al. 2012), or everyday-of-the-week (Cherapkina 2012;Golovin et al. 2015) protocols. Furthermore, authors using similar protocols did not compare the efficacy of the existent methodology, and even when trying to replicate an already existing protocol the results are often contradictory. ...
Full-text available
Neurofeedback training has been an increasingly used technique and is taking its first steps in sport. Being at an embryonic stage, it is difficult to find consensus regarding the applied methodology to achieve the best results. This study focused on understanding one of the major methodological issues—the training session frequency. The aim of the investigation was to understand if there are differences between performing two sessions or three sessions per week in enhancement of alpha activity and improvement of cognition; and in case there are differences, infer the best protocol. Forty-five athletes were randomly assigned to the three-session-training-per-week group, the two-session-training-per-week group and a control group. The results showed that neurofeedback training with three sessions per week was more effective in increase of alpha amplitude during neurofeedback training than two sessions per week. Furthermore, only the three-session-per-week group showed significant enhancement in N-back and oddball performance after training. The findings suggested more condensed training protocol lead to better outcomes, providing guidance on neurofeedback protocol design in order to optimize training efficacy.
... Особое внимание при исследовании адаптации организма к спортивной деятельности традиционно отводят сердечно-сосудистой системе как одной из лимитирующих выполнение физических нагрузок [7]. Однако успешность в спорте зависит не только от кардиореспираторных резервов, но и от состояния нейроэндокринных механизмов регуляции вегетативных функций, обеспечивающих гомеостаз, от гормонального фона и многих других факторов [8]. Все это заставляет искать новые фенотипические маркеры устойчивости спортсмена к интенсивным физическим нагрузкам. ...
Full-text available
The indices of the system of endogenous regulation of nitric oxide (NO) bioavailability of were compared in the group of athletes and the control group of subjects with a sedentary lifestyle. The concentrations of L-arginine (as a substrate of NO synthase and arginase) and its methylated derivatives monomethylarginine and asymmetric and symmetric dimethylarginines (MMA, ADMA and SDMA) in the blood were measured using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with fluorescent detection. In parallel, some common biochemical blood parameters and the total antioxidant status were evaluated. The concentration of L-arginine in the blood plasma of athletes was 24% higher than the concentration in the control group. The levels of ADMA and SDMA were lower by 39 and 80%, respectively. The MMA level was almost two times higher than that in the control group. The total protein, bilirubin, total cholesterol, and triglyceride levels were significantly lower in athletes compared with the control. Interesting significant correlations were found between L-arginine and urea in the control group and between the Arg-to-ADMA ratio and the antioxidant activity index in the group of athletes.
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The aim of the study was to carry out comparative analysis of effects observed in subjects exposed to light and music stimulation controlled by their own brain and heart biopotentials (closed-loop method) or biopotentials of another person. Materials and methods: Volunteers under stress participated in two experiments in pairs. In the first experiment, light and music stimulation effects formed in each subject in a pair on the basis of their own brain and heart biopotentials, while in the second experiment, they formed on the basis of biopotentials of the other subject. Results: Both types of exposure caused reducing the tension of the regulatory systems in the body, reducing stress levels and improving the emotional state due to the mechanisms of multisensory integration and neuroplasticity. A significant increase in the power of the main EEG rhythms, accompanied by significant positive changes in psychological testing results and positive emotional responses to stimulation was observed only during light and music stimulation controlled by the subjects' own brain and heart biopotentials. These data are attributable to the integration of perception and processing of interoceptive signals significant for humans into the resonance mechanisms of the central nervous system, providing normalization of functional state due to stimulation. Conclusion: The data obtained can be used for developing the effective methods of personalized light and music stimulation aimed at timely elimination of functional disorders and returning the human body to homeostasis.
The objective of this study is to identify markers of the addictive condition developing in athletes during exercise deprivation by analyzing electroencephalograms (EEGs), electromyograms (EMGs), skin temperature measurements, sympathetic nervous system activity, levels of anxiety and depression (by psychological tests). A cohort of professional football players (N = 50) voluntarily participated in the study. The athletes were tested under two test conditions: during active training sessions and during exercise deprivation (for seven days). The analyzed results have shown that the functional state of athletes with exercise addiction (due to exercise deprivation), compared with athletes showing no addictive behavior, was characterized by lower brain bioelectric activity (a decrease in the α-rhythm amplitude and power), growth in the muscular tension, increased sympathetic activity, and elevated levels of anxiety and depression. We have concluded that an athlete’s functional state during exercise deprivation is an important predictor for exercise dependence. A prolonged exercise deprivation causes intense psychophysiological changes in the body of athletes inclined to exercise addiction. The obtained results may be useful for experts in the field of sports medicine, as well as for further studies in different types of addictions.
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the electroencephalographic (EEG) changes in students engaged in sports, after a single and continuous low-frequency audiovisual stimulation (AVS) in the regime of rhythmic stimulation of 3-13 Hz and a duration of 25 minutes. We examined the young man of 18-23 years old, students of NSPU engaged in athletics and specializing in middle-distance running, having first qualified sports category and candidates for master of sports. The purpose of this study was to investigate the electroencephalographic (EEG) changes in students-athletes after single and course of low-frequency audiovisual stimulation (AVS). After 20-22 AVS sessions an alterations of the EEG parameters were observed compared to the control (power increase of the theta rhythm and alpha-1 subrange, capacity suppression of the alpha rhythm in response to the eye opening reaction). The particular characteristic of a single AVS was a significant decrease in the power of theta rhythm, decrease of the desynchronization reaction of alpha-1 waves and increase of alpha-2 waves of activation reaction. After the AVS course the increase of number and appearance of the new correlations between EEG parameters were marked, accordingly to Bechtereva's ideas about increasing resistance of the organism to the internal and external effects. The described data confirm the ability of the human's brain to wave entrainment, that can be used to change the functional state and a more successful recovery after exercise.
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In order to estimate the effect of simultaneous α EEG stimulating and electromyogram (EMG) decreasing biofeedback training on the α activity and cognitive functions, fluency, accuracy, and flexibility during cognitive tasks, as well as α-activity characteristics before, during, and after ten training sessions of voluntarily increasing α power in an individual upper α range with the eyes closed were studied in 27 healthy men aged 18–34 years. To isolate the biofeedback effect in training for the α power increase, data on two groups of subjects were compared: an experimental group (14 subjects) with true biofeedback and a control group (13 subjects) with sham biofeedback. Follow-up testing was performed one month after the end of training to estimate the stability of the effect. The results showed that the training for the upper α power increase using biofeedback increased the frequency, width, and power in an individual upper α range at rest and improved cognitive performance only in subjects with a low baseline α frequency. Conversely, sham biofeedback training (without the feedback signal) increased the α power, though less efficiently, only in subjects with a high baseline α frequency, this increase was not accompanied by improved cognitive performance. The biofeedback α training eliminated the decrease in the α amplitude in response to a cognitive task after the biofeedback training course, this effect being preserved within one month. It may be concluded that α EEG-EMG biofeedback training can be used for improving cognitive processes in healthy subjects, as well as for prognostic purposes in clinical practice and in the brain-computer interface technology.
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The test-retest study of the individual alpha peak frequency (IAPF) variability was provided in eyes closed and eyes open conditions in standard (8-12 Hz) and individual alpha band range in different brain areas in 96 healthy male subjects (aged 25-40). The pairwise comparisons showed that IAPF means are not different in the left and right hemisphere sites, in eyes closed and eyes open conditions, in standard and individual alpha range. Computed in the first 5 s after opening eyes fronto-central area IAPF mean was lower than in eyes closed condition. IAPF computed in individual alpha range in posterior area in eyes closed condition had the minimal variability and was the most reproducible in test retest investigation.
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In the course of 2 months, 25 repetitions of a 20 min audio-visual stimulation (AVS) program with stimulations at 17, 9, 4, and 2 Hz were applied to 6 volunteers. EEG data were recorded from 6 scalp locations prior, during and after AVS. In order to identify direct and transient changes in EEG under influence of AVS, total power, relative frequency band powers and magnitude-squared coherences were estimated. Intense brain wave entrainment as a direct reaction to AVS was significant through increase of spectral powers and coherences around the stimulating frequency bands in the occipital areas, spreading also to the central and frontal regions. However, these excitations were 'short-lived'. On the other hand some signs of interhemispheric cooperation (coherences in the narrow bands around 2, 4, and 17 Hz at parieto-occipital areas) remained increased during the investigated 3 min after AVS. As going through further AVS sessions the driving response progressively enhanced for 2 and 4 Hz stimulation in centro-parietal locations. Progress was also found in the left and right hemisphere synchronization examined by coherences. In perspective, the results contribute to deeper comprehension of photic stimulation approaches as a technique of guided entrainment of the brain waves or intermediate increase of hemispheres' synchronization.
In athletes with different types of physical training and various temperaments, variability of the main rhythms of the EEG (α, β, and θ) and the parameters of the desynchronization response of the α-rhythm, the individual extent of the decrease in the power of the α-rhythm during eye opening under the conditions of hypoxia growing from 20.9 to 10% of O2 were studied. Twenty-four 18- to 26-year-old athletes, including 11 swimmers and 13 skiers, were involved in the study. We found that, in contrast to normoxia conditions, hypoxia was associated with the instability of the spectrum of the EEG rhythms and phasic changes during a 25-min hypoxia. The EEG response during hypoxia depended on individual typological features estimated using Strelau’s temperament questionnaire. Negative correlation between the psychological construct “endurance” measured using the FCB-TI questionnaire (Formal Characteristics of Behavior-Temperament Inventory) and the power of the EEG α-rhythm was found. The parameters of training and the features of the respiration pattern that appeared as a consequence of training modulated the sensitivity of brain structures to hypoxia, which was reflected in the changes in the EEG α-rhythm under hypoxia conditions.
A theoretical framework supporting experimental measures of dynamic properties of human EEG is proposed with emphasis on distinct alpha rhythms. Robust relationships between measured dynamics and cognitive or behavioral conditions are reviewed, and proposed physiological bases for EEG at cellular levels are considered. Classical EEG data are interpreted in the context of a conceptual framework that distinguishes between locally and globally dominated dynamic processes, as estimated with coherence or other measures of phase synchronization. Macroscopic (scalp) potentials generated by cortical current sources are described at three spatial scales, taking advantage of the columnar structure of neocortex. New EEG data demonstrate that both globally coherent and locally dominated behavior can occur within the alpha band, depending on narrow band frequency, spatial measurement scale, and brain state. Quasi-stable alpha phase structures consistent with global standing waves are observed. At the same time, alpha and theta phase locking between cortical regions during mental calculations is demonstrated, consistent with neural network formation. The brain-binding problem is considered in the context of EEG dynamic behavior that generally exhibits both of these local and global aspects. But specific experimental designs and data analysis methods may severely bias physiological interpretations in either local or global directions. Hum. Brain Mapping 13:125–164, 2001. © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Acoustic and light stimulation of thecorresponding analyzers at 1–13 Hz stimulates T-cell immunity. Immunological reaction to audiovisual stimulation depends on the initial level of adaptation stress and changes in the actual self-evaluation after exposure.
In this review, a number of experimental findings and theoretical concepts that have led to new insights into the mechanisms underlying brain waves are presented. At the cellular level, the new evidence that certain types of neuron have intrinsic oscillatory properties that may underlie rhythmic EEG activities is discussed. In particular, the question of whether spindle oscillations are autonomous or input-dependent is addressed. At the neural network level, the main circuits of the thalamus and cortex that are responsible for the occurrence and modulation of spindles and alpha activity are described. In addition, the properties of rhythmic activities outside the alpha band are considered, particularly in relation to the prominent beta activity of the visual cortex. At the theoretical level, the possibility that neural networks may behave as complex dynamic systems with the properties of deterministic chaos is discussed. Finally, the fact that brain rhythms may have functional implications for the working of neural networks is examined in relation to 2 cases: the possibility that oscillations may subserve a gating function, and that oscillations may play a role in the formation of assemblies of neurons that represent given stimulus patterns.
The main hypothesis developed in the paper proposes that the events of the subjective experience emerge as a result of the synthesis of three kinds of information in crucial for this mental function cortical areas. This information includes sensory one, information derived from memory and one coming from motivational centers. The hypothesis is based on researches of the brain mechanisms of perception and thinking. It has been shown that the sensation emerges as a result of the synthesis of information on physical parameters and of significance of the stimulus in the projection cortex neurons. This synthesis is provided by the circular spreading of the nerve impulses from the projection cortex to associative cortex, then to hippocampus and the hypothalamic motivation centers with the subsequent return of the impulsation to the projection cortex. It have been shown also that at thinking operations the cortical connections converge to define centers named the interaction foci. Their topography is specific for particular thinking operations. Thus in imaginative thinking the foci are located in temporo-parietal and in abstract-verbal thinking--in frontal cortex. It is proposed that the confrontation and the synthesis of information in the interaction foci result in decision making. The last part of the paper concerns the functional role of the subjective events and their possible influence on brain processes.
Exact localization of equivalent current dipoles (ECD) was obtained by combining the EEG and the MRI mapping allowing to trace the ECG displacement over the cortex. The data obtained corroborate localization of the alpha-rhythm ECD in the Gyrus Calcarina: the human primary visual cortex. Successive shifts of the ECD over this area during generation of each alpha-wave, were revealed. The data are discussed in the light of the "scanning hypothesis" that predicted a certain functional meaning of the alpha-wave spreading for cortical processing of sensory information.