Windward Biofeedback Associates

Windward Biofeedback

Training Your Brain to Work for You

Neurofeedback as exercise

Neurofeedback, like aerobics, weight training, walking, fast walking, etc., is simply a form of exercise using a biofeedback device like the fitbit to monitor and encourage progress. A neurofeedback therapist is simply a fitness coach with extensive knowledge of the brain and of self regulatory techniques. Neurofeedback addresses a large number of psychiatric and emotional issues, in the same way fitness training addresses a large number of physiological issues, simply by providing graded, monitored and behaviorally rewarded brain exercises that move the brain into a more centered, and regulated place, just the way physical fitness reduces cholesterol and blood pressure.

Because the brain is extremely sensitive, neuro providers have to know what they are doing. And because so many of our clients have psychiatric conditions, we need to be proficient in diagnosis and treatment of those conditions, or we’ll be in malpractice and harm patients

However neurofeedback, and all biofeedback, techniques, simply teach self regulation. Self regulation just happens to be at the root of many, many issues.

As far as ADHD research, if you look at ALL the literature (and I’ve looked at most of it), NFB outperforms stimulant medication in about 80 % of the cases studied only because the effects aren’t reversed when the nfb training stops. As you know, stimulant meds + CBT and parent training, out perform stimulalnt meds alone – and stimulant meds alone are effective in about 40% of treatment cases, but the gains are reversed when the stimulant meds are withdrawn. With nfb the treatment effects remain after 40 treatments in about 80% of all clients treated. When we did the demonstration project at TIFFE (with protocols I disagreed with), we got 75%. That’s not a placebo effect. (if I remember correctly that’s about 30%) And it’s way better than stimulant meds.

Insomnia linked to damage in brain communication networks

Science News
from research organizations
Insomnia linked to damage in brain communication networks

April 5, 2016
Radiological Society of North America
Using a sophisticated MRI technique, researchers have found abnormalities in the brain’s white matter tracts in patients with insomnia, according to a new study.
Using a sophisticated MRI technique, researchers have found abnormalities in the brain’s white matter tracts in patients with insomnia. Results of the study were published online in the journal Radiology.

Primary insomnia, in which individuals have difficulty falling or staying asleep for a month or longer, is associated with daytime fatigue, mood disruption and cognitive impairment. Insomnia can also lead to depression and anxiety disorders.

“Insomnia is a remarkably prevalent disorder,” said researcher Shumei Li, M.S., from the Department of Medical Imaging, Guangdong No. 2 Provincial People’s Hospital, Guangzhou, China. “However, its causes and consequences remain elusive.”

For the study, Li, along with colleagues lead by investigator Guihua Jiang, M.D., set out to analyze the white matter tracts in insomnia patients and the relationship between abnormal white matter integrity and the duration and features of insomnia.

“White matter tracts are bundles of axons–or long fibers of nerve cells–that connect one part of the brain to another,” Li said. “If white matter tracts are impaired, communication between brain regions is disrupted.”
The study included 23 patients with primary insomnia and 30 healthy control volunteers. To evaluate mental status and sleep patterns, all participants completed questionnaires including the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, the Insomnia Severity Index, the Self-Rating Anxiety Scale and the Self-Rating Depression Scale.

Each participant also underwent brain MRI with a specialized technique called diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). DTI allows researchers to analyze the pattern of water movement along white matter tracts to identify a loss of tract integrity.

“We used a new method called Tract-Based Spatial Statistics that is highly sensitive to the microstructure of the white matter tract and provides multiple diffusion measures,” Li said.

Results of the analysis showed that compared to the healthy controls, the insomnia patients had significantly reduced white matter integrity in several right-brain regions, and the thalamus which regulates consciousness, sleep and alertness.

“These impaired white matter tracts are mainly involved in the regulation of sleep and wakefulness, cognitive function and sensorimotor function,” Li said.
In addition, abnormalities in the thalamus and body corpus callosum–the largest white matter structure in the brain–were associated with the duration of patients’ insomnia and score on self-rating depression scale.

“The involvement of the thalamus in the pathology of insomnia is particularly critical, since the thalamus houses important constituents of the body’s biological clock,” she added.

The study also found that underlying cause of white matter integrity abnormalities in insomnia patients may be loss of myelin, the protective coating around nerve fibers.

The researchers caution that further study needs to be done on a larger sample to clarify the relationship between altered white matter integrity and insomnia.
Story Source:
The above post is reprinted from materials provided by Radiological Society of North America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
Journal Reference:
1. Shumei Li, al. Reduced Integrity of Right Lateralized White Matter in Patients with Primary Insomnia: A Diffusion-Tensor Imaging Study. Radiology, Aprilo 2016
Cite This Page:
• Chicago
Radiological Society of North America. “Insomnia linked to damage in brain communication networks.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 April 2016. <>.

STARTTS in Sydney, Australia

The New South Wales Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS), in Sydney,  is one of Australia’s leading organisations that helps refugees recover from their experiences and build a new life in Australia.  Most of these refugees have been exposed to multiple traumatic events and suffer severe PTSD.

STARTTS currently employs over 170 professionals from a diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds speaking at least 25 different languages and they utilise a bio-psycho-social model in assessing the impact of trauma, planning treatment and framing interventions. Their services include:

  • Neurofeedback and biofeedback
  • Counselling and psychotherapy
  • Physiotherapy and acupuncture
  • Naturopath consultations
  • Psychiatric assessment/treatment
  • Group therapy/treatment
  • Yoga, Capoeira classes

Neurofeedback was added several years ago, and their rate of success in fully rehabilitating these refugee victims has skyrocketed. The Neurofeedback group had reduced symptoms of Trauma, Anxiety and Depression from Pre to Post assessments compared with the waiting list control group. They also increased their cognitive and verbal ability and were able to discharge many of the experimental group as fully rehabilitated citizens able to contribute to society.

The results have been so meaningful that STARTTS now offer neurofeedback to all their clients.  

In the US, where trauma treatment is fragmented, driven by the pharmaceutical companies, and dictated by insurance firms, wraparound services are not available, neurofeedback is offered only to clients who search, and our treatment outcomes are poor.  Perhaps we could take the Australia lead and provide a wide range of services to those who are in need.

1 year of brainmapping

It’s been a year – and our results adding brain mapping to existing protocols have been phenomenal. Now we understand how to work with a person showing signs of dyslexia, for example. We’re so pleased!

4 channel training now available

Aloha – we are also proud to announce that 4 channel training is now available at Windward Biofeedback Associates.  4 channel training means that 4 times the amount of training can be provided within the clinical hour.  Now, this is not for everyone!  A client needs to build up capacity to train, otherwise sleep is the order of the following hours.  However when a client is ready for it, the results are amazing!

Brain Mapping at Windward Biofeedback Associates

We are proud to announce that Brain Mapping using Brain Master Mini Q, read through New Mind Brain Mapping is now available at Windward Biofeedback Associates.  Brain mapping allows more accurate training,  and the New Mind Brain Mapping access portal permits clients and parents to rate symptoms regularly on a personalized symptom tracking site.  This means our training is more precise, and feedback is more targeted.



Brain Mapping soon to be available at WindwardBiofeedbackAssociates

View neurofeedback videoWe’re so excited! Our brain mapping equipment has arrived, and very soon we will be able to match a map of your brain to the symptoms you mention to make our training even more effective! Imagine – you’ll be able to see what parts of your brain manage various tasks in a real time situation. Cool!

Evidenced Based Best Practice

A neurofeedback session is comfortable and pleasant.Aloha – the American Pediatric Association has announced that Neurofeedback is an “Evidenced Based Best Practice” to help remediate ADHD symptoms.

“The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) “Evidence-
Based Child and Adolescent Psychosocial Interventions”
tool is created twice each year and posted on the
AAP Web site at, using
data from the PracticeWise Evidence-Based Services
Database, available at”

We’re so proud that this evidence based grid was in fact based on the Hawaii State Child and Adolescent Mental Health Best Practice Grid posted in 2004. We remain first in the nation on child’s health.

Biofeedback Eases Performance Anxiety!

This article comes thanks to LA Times Blog

Biofeedback technique eases musicians’ anxiety

June 17, 2010 |  7:00 am

If you’ve ever sat down at the piano to play a Mozart sonata and couldn’t find middle C, you know the feeling of performance anxiety. The condition, often called stage fright, is anxiety that is so severe it can impede performance. As many as three-quarters of musicians have musical performance anxiety. Thus, for serious students, learning to master this condition may be as important as learning all the scales.

A new study shows that a specific biofeedback technique is highly effective in decreasing stage fright. Researchers studied 14 college-age musicians. The musicians’ tendency to have stage fright was estimated in a performance before an audience at the start of the study (with questionnaires and heart rate measurements). Half of the musicians repeated the performance four weeks later. The other half received training in biofeedback that was designed to teach them how to control their heart rate through thoughts and emotions. These students also performed again after four weeks.

The study showed a 71% decrease in performance anxiety in the biofeedback group compared with the control group. The biofeedback group had a 62% improvement in performance. The musicians in the biofeedback group also said they had an overall increased sense of calmness, slept better, were more relaxed and had less anger in their everyday lives.

Biofeedback helps coordinate the brain-heart-body processes, the authors wrote. This synchronicity defeats performance anxiety and gives musicians a feeling of “flow,” the authors said, which they defined as “when a person is functioning at peak capacity, including mind, body and energy.”

The study appears in the current [June 2010] issue of Biofeedback, published by the Assn. for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback.

Introduces Windward Biofeedback Associates

Staff at Windward Biofeedback are interested in helping people maximize brain functioning in order to live more joyfully– neurofeedback training is useful for waking up lazy, bored brains, like ADHD kids have, for quieting down fast, obsessive brains, like many executives have, and for helping people sleep better when they haven’t been able to for awhile.  Neurofeedback is a no medication – learn to control your own processes approach to functioning better.  And yes, when it would help, our staff can provide psychotherapy, hypnosis, parent counseling, and marriage counseling, too.

And you get to play with all my gadgets as well – Breath training programs, Heart Math Biofeedback, alpha stimulation for pain management, Audio visual Entrainment Devices.