38 healthy subjects participated in the study conducted in the Program in Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience () Laboratory at the University of Pittsburgh.
Study participants were asked to perform the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (), a well-validated assessment of cognitive function that assesses information processing speed and flexibility in response to extreme frustration. The PASAT is expected to cause participants to feel stressed, as the task accurately mimics the effects of boredom and frustration on focus and accuracy.
Each participant completed the PASAT under two placebo vibration conditions, two Apollo vibration conditions, and one no vibration condition. In all cases the participants did not know what the vibrations were supposed to do and the researchers were blinded as to which condition (active, placebo or null) that the participant had received.
Under the placebo and no vibration controls, participants’ accuracy on the task decreased over time, they reported feeling stressed, and their Heart Rate Variability (HRV), a key metric of the body’s recovery from stress did not change or went down. This is typically what is observed in the PASAT.
However, with Apollo vibration patterns, participants reported feeling calmer, their performance (accuracy) on the task improved, and their Heart Rate Variability (HRV) went up by 2-3X their average within 3 minutes.
These preliminary findings suggest that the specific vibration patterns used in the Apollo technology increased the ability to focus and remain calm during periods of stress and that these programs improve the body’s ability to recover and be resilient to stress, as measured by HRV.
Even more interesting was that the more HRV increased with Apollo vibration patterns, the better subjects performed on the task and the more efficient the subjects became at the task. That is to say that, as HRV increases with Apollo vibrations, the greater the performance gains from the amount of work put into the task (as measured by pupillometry). This suggests that by supporting mental and physical recovery from stress, Apollo can improve performance and focus.
It has long been suspected that cognitive performance correlates with the balance of the nervous system.
This is the first time that a study has suggested that specific frequencies, generated mathematically and applied to the body, could predictably impact attention control and cognitive performance relative to how much they improve balance the nervous system. The more Apollo frequencies helped to improve balance between the parasympathetic and sympathetic systems, the better the observed performance gains, particularly under stress.
For more details on this study, you can at Western Psychiatric Institute & Clinic.