The impact of vigorous cycling exercise on visual attention: a study with the BR8 wireless dry EEG system
Lin, C-T and King, J-T and John, AR and Huang, K-C and Cao, Z and Wang, Y-K, The impact of vigorous cycling exercise on visual attention: a study with the BR8 wireless dry EEG system, Frontiers in Neuroscience pp. 1-10. ISSN 1662-453X (2021) [Refereed Article]
Many studies have reported that exercise can influence cognitive performance. But advancing our understanding of the interrelations between psychology and physiology in sports neuroscience requires the study of real-time brain dynamics during exercise in the field. Electroencephalography (EEG) is one of the most powerful brain imaging technologies. However, the limited portability and long preparation time of traditional wet-sensor systems largely limits their use to laboratory settings. Wireless dry-sensor systems are emerging with much greater potential for practical application in sports. Hence, in this paper, we use the BR8 wireless dry-sensor EEG system to measure P300 brain dynamics while cycling at various intensities. The preparation time was mostly less than 2 min as BR8 system’s dry sensors were able to attain the required skin-sensor interface impedance, enabling its operation without any skin preparation or application of conductive gel. Ten participants performed four sessions of a 3 min rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) task while resting and while cycling. These four sessions were pre-CE (RSVP only), low-CE (RSVP in 40–50% of max heart rate), vigorous-CE (RSVP in 71–85% of max heart rate) and post-CE (RSVP only). The recorded brain signals demonstrate that the P300 amplitudes, observed at the Pz channel, for the target and non-target responses were significantly different in all four sessions. The results also show decreased reaction times to the visual attention task during vigorous exercise, enriching our understanding of the ways in which exercise can enhance cognitive performance. Even though only a single channel was evaluated in this study, the quality and reliability of the measurement using these dry sensor-based EEG systems is clearly demonstrated by our results. Further, the smooth implementation of the experiment with a dry system and the success of the data analysis demonstrate that wireless dry EEG devices can open avenues for real-time measurement of cognitive functions in athletes outside the laboratory.