How Memory Can Improve Your Golf Swing

The attraction and frustration of sport is that there is always room for improvement. There are no absolutes. Sprinters can run the 100 metres m faster, batsmen can score more runs, tennis players can play more passing shots, darts players can score 180 more frequently, and a golf ball can always be struck more sweedy. Regardless of the sport, there are two fundamental ways in which you can improve your game technique and practice. Memory plays a key role in both. Golf, like chess, is a game of...

Learning The Twentieth Century Calendar

Sunday's child is bonny, good, blithe and gay Monday's child is fair offace Tuesday's child is full of grace Wednesday's child is full of woe Thursday's child has far to go Friday's child is loving and giving Saturday's child works hard for a living On the 11 September 1978, a Bulgarian playwright named Georgie Markov was queuing at a bus stop on the Embankment in London. He was on his h way to Bush House on the Strand, where he worked as a translator for the BBC's World Service. Shortly before...

How To Win Always At Trivial Pursuit

As part of my recent promotional work, I was asked to memorize two editions of Trivial Pursuit - the Annual Edition and Genus III. There were m 7,500 questions in total, on Geography, Entertainment, History, Art and Literature, Science and Nature, Sport and Leisure. If you have read Section 2 (History and Geography), it won't come as a surprise to learn that I memorized the answers using instant association and location. Not everyone, I admit, might be taken by the idea of memorizing thousands...

How To Remember Speeches

You might be a barrister, lawyer, politician, comedian, priest, lecturer, actor, or perhaps you've been asked to make a speech at a wedding or after dinner. We all have to address others in public at some time in our lives, and for many of us it can be a nerve-wracking occasion. A trained memory can help you to deliver a good speech, effordessly and without any worry. A badly prepared speech or talk is not only embarrassing for the speaker, it can also be...

Easy As Pi

It was on 9 and 10 March 1987, at the Tsukuba University Club House, when Hideaki Tomoyori recalled the first 40,000 places in 17 hours and 21 minutes (including breaks totalling 4 hours 15 minutes) to set a new world record. In Britain, Creighton Carvello recited the first 20,013 places on 27 June 1980. It took him 9 hours and 10 minutes at Saltscar Comprehensive School, Rcdcar, Cleveland, to set the British record. In the near future, I plan to set a new world record by memorizing the first...

Actions

Staying, for the moment, with these ten numbers (20 to 29), you must now ascribe a unique action to each person. BN (29), for example, makes me think of Barry Norman. His action would be operating a projector. The bus driver's action would be driving a red doubledecker. Each action should involve a prop of some sort. If the action is playing the piano, the prop is the piano. If it's skiing, the prop is a pair of skis. The action should also be as versatile as possible. Later on, when you are...

PETER Of Ravenna

Peter of Ravenna was a fifteenth century entrepreneur who spotted a gap in the market for mnemonics. Trained as a jurist in Padua, he published a memory book in 1491, which in today's terms was an international bestseller. The Phoenix was translated into many languages, went through numerous editions and was considered a bible for anyone who wanted to improve their memory. Peter removed memory from the religious context that Thomas Aquinas and the thirteenth-century Scholastics had given it,...

Golf Lessons

One of the hardest things about golf lessons is trying to remember every pearl of wisdom handed down by your coach. It's not just a question of remember ing what you are doing wrong, you must also remember the bits you got right No matter how you are taught, the easiest way to recall all your coach's dos and don'ts is to draw up a mental list. The entire action of hitting a ball from takeaway to impact takes less than two seconds on average, but there is a crowded sequence of events that must...

Metroporus Of Scepsis

Metrodorus was a Greek man of letters, who turned away from philosophy to pursue a political life and to teach rhetoric. He lived in the first century BC and was a worthy successor to Simonides, widely considered as the founder of the art of memory. For more on Simonides, see Chapter 26. One of Metrodorus's favourite tricks was to memorize conversations. Later on, he would repeat them back to people, verbatim. We think he did this by employing shorthand images for words or groups of words....

Further Evidence

I find this passage from Ad Herrenium particularly uncanny. As you know, people play an essential part in my approach to memory. I have even assigned characters to every number from 00 to 99. Ad Herrenium is the only one of the three surviving Latin sources which states that people make the best images. Quintillian advocates the use of objects such as anchors to remind him of the naval content of a speech and weapons to remind him of the military content , and Cicero talks ambiguously about...

How To Remember Lost Chapters Of Your Life

This brief chapter is for those who are frustrated by their inability to recall scenes from their childhood. It's also for anyone who likes the idea of fit- ness training, but can't stand jogging. I am dedicated to the concept of exercise. Every morning I enter my mental gym usually an easy-back chair to put my imagination through a punishing programme of exercise. One of my favourite routines involves something I call 'time travel'. If I am honest, this particular 'exercise' is anything but...

Harry Lorayne

Harry Lorayne is one of the great memory men of the twentieth century - a fine performer, actor and lecturer. Hundreds of companies, including the likes of IBM, US Steel and General Electric, have hired him to conduct seminars on mind power and memory training. And he has appeared on just about every American TV show, including Johnny Carson's The Tonight Show, Good Morning America, and The Today Show. Lorayne grew up in the depression years of the late 1920s and 1930s, in New York's Lower East...

How To Beat Quiz Machines

Soon after I had memorized 7,500 Trivial Pursuit questions, it occured to me that there must be a way of learning the questions on quiz machines found in pubs and clubs. If there was, anyone with a trained memory could make themselves some pocket money. I looked into the subject and discovered a small group of professional players who tour the country, earning serious amounts of cash. One person, who leaves the initials F.E.Y. on machines, has recendy bought a 75,000 house with his earnings....

Declarative And Reflexive Memory

If you are being taught how to drive a car, you are constantly trying to convert what the instructor is saying into physical actions. You make a conscious effort to remember the order of 'mirror, signal, manoeuvre', for example. Mental recall of this sort is known as 'declarative memory'. In time, you will begin to check in your mirror, flick on the indicator and pull out without consciously recalling your instructor's words. Your actions become automatic and there is no longer any conscious...

How To Remember Numbers

The problem with numbers is that they are cold and unfeeling. Group a list of letters together and you have a word that represents something - an image, an emotion, a person. Throw a few numbers together and you have, well, you have another number. So many people find numbers awkward, slippery customers. And yet numbers play such an important part in our lives. Numbers are everywhere. Haven't we all wished, at some time or another, that we could remember numbers without writing them down...

Dominic Obrien

CENTRAL LIBRARY VICTORIA SQUARE Tel 24061 Ext 2ori4 09.30-1 7.00 iday-time houm 20100 Lato nichts amp Sri . j To my dear mother Pamela who is forever saying, 'How does he do it ' The author would like to thank Jon Stock for his invaluable assistance in preparing this book. First published in Great Britain in 1993 by Pavilion Books Limited, 26 Upper Ground, London SE1 9PD. The moral right of the author has been asserted. Designed by Peter Bridgcwater All rights reserved. No part of this...