What is the Sound-Powered Mind?
The unique human brain is the very source of the humanity we cherish. Thus, its ever-changing complexities serve as an inherent point of research. There are countless variables that impact the human brain, many of which are immeasurable and predominantly hypothetical. However, a noticeable factor that is capable of altering or potentially even enhancing the brain is clear: the constituent of sound. The capabilities of sound are severely underestimated; it can be used in a thermoacoustic heat engine, manipulated in order to enable the levitation of objects, or even used in order to perform non-invasive brain surgery.
Previous applications of sound to the brain have been primarily hypothetical and pertain to binaural beats, specifically their ability to induce one of the five main brainwave states: Alpha, Beta, Delta, Gamma, and Theta. Different brainwave states are associated with contrasting levels of stress, memory retention, fatigue, creativity, and more. This raises an interesting question: could a methodical use of sound be used to maximize mental performance? Could the transition from one brainwave state to another allow an athlete to always be on their A-game?
There is an answer to these questions: potentially. Potentially, there is the capacity to utilize sound frequencies and tones to alter the brain’s ability to handle stress, memory, and focus. But ethically, it is still indeterminate whether or not this practice would be considered adequate. The idea that is behind a use of sound to boost the brain matches an already existing field: neuroenhancement. Currently, neuroenhancement is primarily limited to pharmacological drugs like Modafinil which claim to improve cognition. While some of these substances are actually approved by the FDA, almost none are actively considered legal in the sports world as all are associated with doping and the gaining of an unfair advantage. Sound cannot be considered in the same sense; hypothetically, if an athlete was to use sound to keep themselves awake, alert, and in a state of heightened focus, it would be difficult to make a claim they were unfairly gaining an advantage.
The application of sound to sports psychology is an interesting theory that may provide the field with a needed source of inspiration. Humans are not perfect, and there may be a way to actively improve. But either way, the idea that sound has such capabilities raises the question of what other truths may be hidden in plain sight — or rather plain hearing.