Exam Anxiety? Poor Study Skills? Nervousness? Learning Challenges? Trouble Presenting in Front of Others?
Two major issues Alberta student are facing: 1) pressure to perform and 2) learning challenges. Students are having trouble studying for exams, recalling information and making a presentation in front of others. The pressure is affecting their ability to succeed and there are more learning challenges being diagnosed today than ever before.
My name is John Stevenson and I specialize in the fields of Sport Psychology, Stress-Management, and Performance Psychology. My focus is working with students with learning disorders in particular ADD/ADHD.
I obtained my first Master’s degree in Sports Psychology from Toronto’s York University in 1992, and subsequently obtained a second Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from City University in Edmonton in 2006. In addition to my designation as a Registered Psychologist within the Province of Alberta, I am also a Licensed Heartmath Provider, Certified Coherent Breathing Instructor, Mental Game Coach Professional, and trained in Self-Regulation and Solution-Focused Therapy.
I was just recently hired to be the Sports Psychologist for Team Alberta for 2015 Canada Winter Games. I have worked with a wide variety of organizations, individuals, and teams in order to improve their performance including the University of Alberta, Alberta Health Services, Chartered Accountants of Alberta, Atco, Alberta Environment, Canadian Military, Bio Ware Inc., Ortona Gymnastics, Saskatoon Blades Hockey Club, Kootenay Ice Hockey Club, Edmonton Oilers, Ottawa Senators, St. Francis Xavier High School, Archbishop MacDonald High School, Leduc Jr. High School, St. Edmunds Jr. High School, Mt. Carmel Jr. High School, Lilian Schick School, Ronald Harvey School and the Strathcona Christian Academy.
There are several new, natural, non- invasive approaches to helping both children and adults learn to self-regulate their brain waves, improve their perceptual-cognitive skills, and heighten their working memory to enable them to focus more efficiently and maintain their concentration for extended periods of time. When I work with children and adults, I utilize five groundbreaking technologies that enhance a person’s ability to stay focused, composed, and alert. These include:
ZONE PERFORMANCE ATTENTION TRAINING PROGRAMS
- Thought Technology‘s Heart-Rate Variability Biofeedback and Neurofeedback Training Program
- The Cog-Med Online Attention & Working Memory Program
- The Cognisen’s Neurotracker
- The Dynavision D2 Board
- The David Pal (Audio Visual Entrainment Program)
Unlike stimulants, Neurofeedback training has shown to have a direct long term effect on increasing the person’s ability to remain focused (decreased slow wave activity) and spend extended periods of time concentrating in a problem solving manner (increased fast wave activity). PracticeWise, the company that maintains the American Academy of Pediatrics “Evidence-based Child and Adolescent Psycho-social Interventions” (see current edition here) has just announced it will elevate biofeedback to “Level 1 — Best Support” as an intervention for Attention & Hyperactivity Behaviors in the next edition. Working Memory Training will stay at Level 2 — Good Support. Studies influencing the decision included:
Beauregard, M., & Levesque, J. (2006). Functional magnetic resonance imaging investigation of the effects of neurofeedback training on neural bases of selective attention and response inhibition in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Applied Psychology and Biofeedback, 31, 3–20.
Gevensleben, H., Holl, B., Albrecht, B., Vogel, C., Schlamp, D., et al. (2009). Is neurofeedback an efficacious treatment for ADHD?: A randomized controlled clinical trial. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 50, 780–789.
Levesque, J., Beauregard, M., & Mensour, B. (2006). Effect of neurofeedback training on the neural substrates of selective attention in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder: A functional magnetic resonance imaging study. Neuroscience Letters, 394, 216–221.
Omizo, M. M., & Michael, W. B. (1982). Biofeedback-induced relaxation training and impulsivity, attention to task, and locus of control among hyperactive boys. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 15, 414–416.
Rivera, E., & Omizo, M. M. (1980). The effects of relaxation and biofeedback on attention to task and impulsivity among male hyperactive children. The Exceptional Child, 27, 41–51
In addition, Neurofeedback has shown to have a similar effect to stimulants in that it increases the child’s “natural guards” to inhibit or avoid impulsive actions. Children already taking medication can continue while training. In most cases it is possible to gradually reduce the dosage as self-regulation is mastered. Frequently the need for medication is eliminated.
Neurofeedback training is the opposite of therapy or treatment by means of medication. In Neurofeedback training, children quickly recognize that no one is doing “it” to them. They are totally in control, responsible, empowered and working it out for themselves. This feedback is nothing more or less than a useful tool which allows them to learn self-regulation.
This training first became available in Canada at the University of Alberta in Edmonton in 1991. I have been providing Neurofeedback and Biofeedback training in Edmonton and surrounding areas since January 2011. The following client testimonials provided by parents, principals, and students highlight the effectiveness of our program with regard to effectively treating ADD/ADHD.
- After my son’s ADHD diagnosis I wasn’t given many treatment options other than medication. After attending one of John’s Information sessions, I was interested in the possibilities of bio and neurofeedback. My 8 year old is becoming increasingly aware of how his body and brain work together. At school, this awareness translates to being more focused, attentive, and able to sustain his concentration. He is less disruptive and developing a healthier self-esteem. His improvements are obvious to all those around him, including his teachers, coaches, friends, and classmates. I am optimistic and thrilled with his progress.
- John has been working with our son for 6 months for ADHD therapy and since then we have noticed a difference in the way that our son perceives his condition. Our goal for him is to reduce or remove the dependency on medication and to improve his focus. John’s individual approach is very thoughtful and systematic by giving our son the tools to self-regulate his behavior, with the ability to also practice these skills at home. As well, John’s background in professional sports has given him a very keen insight into how elite athletes are able to focus and excel using these same proven techniques.
- My family has had the privilege of working with John Stevenson for the past 8 years, first as a goalie coach and as a sports psychologist.John’s reputation as being one of the best in the business does not come as a surprise to me. John has always impressed me with his integrity and his ability to communicate and establish relationships with people in an effective and non-threatening way. John will always go the extra mile for his clients. As a goalie coach and psychologist, John always is always looking at ways to help his clients become the best they can be. John always uses cutting edge drills, ideas and technology to help goalies hone their skills and now he is using Neurofeedback, Neurotracker and Dynavision to help students learn in the classroom.As a goalie, and as a grade 10 student, my son experienced tremendous success while working with John. In the past two years, my son worked with John using Neurofeedback, Neurotracker and the Dynavision technologies. These technologies helped my son see the ice better, helped him remain calm in stressful situations and helped him to increase his focus and ability to concentrate. While these technologies helped my son as a goalie, we noticed the biggest impact in the classroom. After using these technologies, my son was able to make the honor roll for the first time in his academic career. Again, my son states that these technologies helped him stay calm during stressful situations, improved his ability to concentrate and focus his attention in the classroom. For the first time in 10 years, my son enjoys school.As a teacher for the past 20 years, I see Neurofeedback, the Neurotracker and Dynavision technologies helping students from all walks of life. These technologies will help students with Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder to control their impulsivity, and to improve their ability to concentrate in the classroom. I also see this technology helping students to improve their results on Provincial Achievement Exams and on Diploma exams.My family sincerely appreciates John’s efforts to help my son as a goalie and as a student. Again, we feel the traditional methods of Sports Psychology along with Neurofeedback, Neurotracker and Dynavision has helped my son excel in the sport he loves and in the classroom. Thank you, John.
- My husband and I have been fortunate enough to have had the caring professionals at Zone Performance Psychology work with our daughter for the last six months. Caitlyn, who is now eleven, was diagnosed with AD/HD at the age of 6. Through our years of navigating a system that makes it tough for parents to find answers, we were introduced to John, from Zone, by a work colleague. Finally, we had someone who was willing to treat Caitlyn’s symptoms with more than just medication and was willing to work with our entire family to help her develop both coping and calming strategies. By using these strategies, Caitlyn is not only able to deal with the stresses that come with AD/HD but she has also brought her marks up in all her school subjects. The reports from her teachers acknowledge this and they say she is much calmer and more focused in school. At home, we have not experienced as many major emotional blow outs as we had prior to meeting John. At dance and in her performances, her coaches have also reported a significant increase in her focus, attention and ability. Finally, we have someone who has given us hope…we know our future will always contain AD/HD, but we now have hope that our daughter will be able to navigate her future successfully. I highly recommend giving the professionals at Zone Performance Psychology the opportunity to help you and your family unlock the potential in your children.
The ADD/ADHD program offered by Zone Performance Program typically takes approximately five to six months to complete depending on the severity of the symptoms that the client is experiencing. The services offered in our program may be covered by your extended health care benefit plan or may be claimed as a medical expense on your income tax return.
For more information about this alternative therapy, including videos, please visit http://www.edmontonadhd.com/. Zone Performance can provide on-site information seminars and training at the schools and parents can contact us via email firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling at 780-803-5646 to set-up an initial appointment to determine how this program can benefit your child/student.
I look forward to connecting with you to discuss the services that would most benefit you and your organization.
John Stevenson Registered Psychologist #3559