The Sensorimotor Rhythm (SMR) is a brainwave frequency between 12-15 Hz, which sits along the borderline between alpha and beta waves.

It can be described as the “sweet spot of focus” where we have enhanced executive functioning and are in complete control of our attention.

Neurofeedback specialist Dr. Andrew Hill described the sensorimotor rhythm like this:

“If you’ve seen a cat on a windowsill watching a bird then you’ve seen SMR. It’s this liquid, still-body and laser-like focus.

A still body and focused mind is advantageous because you can jump into action much easier from relaxation than tension.

These brain waves are produced when your body is completely still and your mind is focused on a single task.”

The Benefits of Sensorimotor Rhythm Training:

Training the sensorimotor rhythm with neurofeedback protocols has been found to be highly effective for improving focus, mood and attention span, particularly for people who have been diagnosed with:

  1. Insomnia [1]
  2. Anxiety [2]
  3. ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) [3].

The SMR brain wave frequency has also been found to be related to automaticity during skill execution. A study on improving golf putting performance using SMR neurofeedback training found it can enhance focus and sports performance [4].

It has also shown promise in reversing cognitive decline and improving working memory in elderly adults [5].

Neurofeedback clinicians are also using SMR brainwave training to assist with epilepsy, depression, stress and autism. It has been found that the improved ability for sustained focus and concentration in the SMR frequency range of brain waves improves learning, reading speed and energy levels.

The main drawback of neurofeedback training for optimizing sensorimotor rhythm control is that it can be very expensive, ranging from $5,000 – $10,000+ for a full course of treatment in a lab.

A more affordable alternative may be to use binaural beats.

Binaural Beats For The Sensorimotor Rythmn:

If you aren’t familiar with binaural beats, they are an emerging form of sound therapy that uses brainwave entrainment frequencies to alter your brain waves.

While there hasn’t been a lot of research into binaural beats as a treatment for medical conditions,  judging by their massive popularity on YouTube, millions of people use them regularly to help with focus, creativity and relaxation.

A number of research studies have found that binaural beats improve cognition and mood while there has been found to be little evidence of adverse side effects [6].

While binaural beats may not provide the same effectiveness as professional neurofeedback training, they are something worth exploring for the self-directed biohacker simply because in 5-10 minutes of listening you can experience the effects for yourself.

While some people find they aren’t effective at all, many others find them extremely effective so it’s best to take a do-it-yourself approach exploring the different brain wave frequencies and what they can do for your focus and attention to see for yourself.

I have found listening to binaural beats tuned between 12-15 Hz in the sensorimotor rhythm to be extremely effective for improving my ability to stay focused and concentrate for long periods of time.

When I listen to sensorimotor rhythm binaural beats using my headphones, I feel a sense of physical and mental calm, which helps improve my energy levels and control my distractibility.

I also find them effective for training the single-minded focus necessary to drop into the flow state, which emerges when we go deeper into relaxed alpha brain waves.

Get The SMR Focus Binaural Beats Protocol:

Improve your ability to stay focused and concentrate on a single activity for longer periods of time with SMR brainwave entrainment using binaural beats.

Try These SMR Binaural Beats:

Here are some SMR binaural beats you can try to improve your focus.

1. SMR Waves 12-15 Hz

You can try these pure SMR binaural beats frequencies alone or in the background while listening to music.

2. SMR Waves 12.5 – 15 Hz

The binaural beats frequency is quieter in this track but it is also suitable for relaxed focus.

If you want to experiment with high-quality binaural beats for entraining SMR Waves, I recommend trying out our SMR Focus Binaural Beats Protocol.

You can try out a sample SMR binaural beats frequency and purchase a series of binaural beats tracks designed to facilitate focused SMR waves that you can listen to with headphones anytime you need a boost in focus and concentration.

I hope you enjoy this post learning about SMR waves, please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

References:

[1] Enhancing sleep quality and memory in insomnia using instrumental sensorimotor rhythm conditioning

[2] Sensorimotor rhythm neurofeedback training relieves anxiety in healthy people

[3] Comparison of Sensorimotor Rhythm (SMR) and Beta Training on Selective Attention and Symptoms in Children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): A Trend Report

[4] Sensorimotor Rhythm Neurofeedback Enhances Golf Putting Performance

[5] SMR Neurofeedback Training Facilitates Working Memory Performance in Healthy Older Adults: A Behavioral and EEG Study

[6] Auditory Beat Stimulation and its Effects on Cognition and Mood States