Movement proved to be the key to creative thinking

(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists have shown that movement restrictions negatively affect creative thinking.

In the modern world, there is a growing demand for creative thinking and the search for means of how to develop creativity in oneself.

In addition to already known techniques – the use of switching between “diffuse” and “directed” ways of thinking – scientists are looking for new ones. One of these ways that researchers have noticed is movement and its impact on creativity.

Scientists from the University of Würzburg drew attention to a pattern known since ancient Greece: free movement helps to think more flexibly and vividly and leads to new ideas. A study published in the journal Psychological Researchwas carried out on 60 subjects.

In order to test whether free movement without any restrictions really affects creative thinking, scientists conducted three different experiments. In each of these experiments, the participants had to solve the problem of “alternative use of Guildford”.

They were given a series of words for objects—bandage, brick, chair, table, frying pan, trash bag, lipstick, pencil, newspaper, shoe, spoon, tile, toothbrush, and towel. Participants were asked to name as many uses for these items as possible.

In the first experiment, half of the participants were allowed to walk around the room while they generated ideas, while the rest had to sit quietly at the computer and not leave their seat. It turned out that the number of ideas generated by participants who were allowed to walk around the room was higher than those who were forced to sit in one place.

In the second and third experiments, the researchers compared the number of suggested ideas in participants who could: 1) move freely around the room, 2) move only along a predetermined route, 3) sit quietly in one place, 4) sit at a computer screen and fix their eyes on one point. In this case, the results were highest for participants who could either move freely around the room or sit in one place,

Scientists have shown that the presence of any restrictions significantly reduces creativity. According to the researchers, it is important that during creative thinking, movements are not suppressed and do not turn into regular patterns.

This can happen when people focus, for example, on a small screen such as a mobile phone, tablet, or similar devices. Thus, increased use of mobile phones and similar devices – including in education during the coronavirus pandemic – could potentially have a negative impact on some cognitive processes, such as creativity.


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