How To Train For a Memory Championship (II) Figures Test

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The test of figures is one of the most funny tests of the whole Speed Memory competition. As you probably may know, the test consists of watching colored figured as they appear on the screen. Once the sequence of figures has finished (there are 15), you must remember the shape of the figure, the color and the position within the sequence. The sequence of figures starts a pace selected by the user, but it increases speed as the figures appear, been the last figures shown at a very quick speed.

Depending on the starting speed selected by the competitor, he will obtain more or less points. Of course, a quicker speed is more difficult but provides more points. The goal is not only to remember as many figures as possible but also, to do it at the quickest speed.

I specially like this test because I believes that this is the real one that stretches the brain the most. Apart from having to apply memorization techniques to the memorization of the sequence, you have to switch between the different techniques while the figures are still appearing, and increasing at each step the speed of appearance. Even if you are not planning to participate in the competition, just practicing this test is a huge training for your brain.

In this post, I am going to explain one of the possible the techniques that you can apply to solve this test, and the training required to absorb the technique. In order to be able to follow this explanation you must have mastered our two previous posts:

The Technique

The first thing to master this test is to learn the correspondence table. This table, assigns to any figure shape a number (between 0 and 9), and to any color another number (between 0 and 9). Hence, a figure like a circle in purple will correspond to 07, and a star in yellow will correspond to 94. Check the table below:

For figures
  • Circle: 0
  • Triangle: 3
  • Square: 4
  • Pentagon: 5
  • Hexagon: 6
  • Heptagon: 7
  • Rectangle: 8
  • Star: 9
For colors
  • Black: 0
  • Brown: 1
  • Red: 2
  • Orange: 3
  • Yellow: 4
  • Green: 5
  • Blue: 6
  • Purple: 7
  • Gray: 8
  • White: 9

The first thing you must do is to learn those two lists by heart. Once you know the lists you will be able to convert any coloured shape to a two cyphers number. Then, if you mastered our post about the basic memory foundation, you will know that to each two cyphers numbers corresponds a word. Hence, with the previous table we have just converted a coloured figure into a word. That is just what we need to memorize the sequence. The question is now, will you do the conversion quick enough? There will be specific exercises for this in the workout section.

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Now, I am assuming you are able to convert figures to words. The technique for the memorizing the sequence of 15 figures works then as follows:

  1. From figures number 1 to figure number 7, you must create an image in your mind of the word that correspond to each figure, and link each image with the next. This is the technique of linking described in our post Creating the basis of a perfect memory.
  2. For figures 8 and 9 you should only visualize the image of the word, without linking. You must have a clear vision, as clear as possible of each one separated.
  3. From figure 10 to figure 13, you must repeat in your mind the words that correspond to those figures. No visualization.
  4. Figures 14 and 15 you must take a picture with your eyes of the figure, and just remember what you saw (this is eidetic memory). That is you must take a picture of the shape of the figure and its color. no words, no visualization, nothing. Just pure rote eidetic memory. But at the same time that you still repeat in your mind the previous 4 figures in a repeating loop.

Once the 15 figures are gone, you can have a paper and a pencil in your hand. Now it is time to download your head with the information:

  1. First, write in the paper the last two figures you saw, without thinking in anything (otherwise they will be gone), but still repeating in your mind the 4 figures previous to those two last.
  2. Then write down in the paper the 4 words you are repeating in your mind
  3. Now try to remember the images you took for figure 8 and 9.
  4. Finally, you can start from figure 1 recreating in your mind the chain of images from figure number 1 to number 7, while writing them at the same time in the computer.

That is the technique. It sounds quite complex to perform all of that in your mind, specially when you are being pressed by the time. But I can tell you that this is possible. Hence let’s go to the workouts to achieve that.

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The Workouts

The first workout is created to master the tables and the conversion from figure to word. Do this workout until you have mastered it. Do not start with the other workouts until you have mastered this once completely.

Basic Memory Workout

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 1.25 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear colored figures up to a number of 15. Your work consists of identifying the corresponding word to each colored figure (as defined in your conversion table).
  • It is very likely you won’t be able to identify the words for the 15 figures. Take note of the maximum number of figures you identified.
  • Repeat the exercise for 8 times.
  • Write down on the training sheet your maximum number of figures achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.

Once you have mastered the previous workout, it is time to perform each day the following series of workouts.

Gaining Speed At Linking Workout

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 0.2 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear colored figures up to a number of 15. Your work consists of linking each figure with the next.
  • If you can link all of them, decrease the Seconds parameter by 0.1. Your goal is to decrease that parameter as much as possible
  • Repeat the exercise for 5 minutes.
  • Write down on the training sheet your minimum time achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.
Training the context change – 1

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 0.2 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Select number of figures of 6 (parameter Number).
  • DO NOT activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear 6 colored figures one after another. Your work consists of repeating in your mind the word associated to the first 4, and then take a picture of the last 2.
  • If you can do the work correctly, decrease the Seconds parameter by 0.1. Your goal is to decrease that parameter as much as possible
  • Repeat the exercise for 5 minutes.
  • Write down on the training sheet your minimum time achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.
Training the context change – 2

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 0.2 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Select number of figures of 9 (parameter Number).
  • DO NOT activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear 9 colored figures one after another. Your work consists of linking the first 7 and then just having an image in your mind of the last 2.
  • If you can do the work correctly, decrease the Seconds parameter by 0.1. Your goal is to decrease that parameter as much as possible
  • Repeat the exercise for 5 minutes.
  • Write down on the training sheet your minimum time achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.
Training the context change – 3

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 0.2 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Select number of figures of 9 (parameter Number).
  • DO NOT activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear 9 colored figures one after another. Your work consists of linking the first 3, then just having an image in your mind of the next 2, and then repeat in your mind the words of the last 4.
  • If you can do the work correctly, decrease the Seconds parameter by 0.1. Your goal is to decrease that parameter as much as possible
  • Repeat the exercise for 5 minutes.
  • Write down on the training sheet your minimum time achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.
Putting all together workout

  • Open the Speed Memory program and select the option Training. Then press OK.
  • On the screen that will appear, click at the figures icon.
  • Select a Blank Time of 0.2 seconds.
  • Where it says Seconds, select 1.75.
  • Select number of figures of 15 (parameter Number).
  • DO NOT activate the Constant Time option.
  • When you are ready, press the Start button. There will appear 15 colored figures one after another. Your work consists of applying the technique described above for memorising 15 figures. This includes integrating everything in a single.
  • If you can do the work correctly, decrease the Seconds parameter by 0.1. Your goal is to decrease that parameter as much as possible
  • Repeat the exercise for 10 minutes.
  • Write down on the training sheet your minimum time achieved. Try to beat your that number the next day.

Conclusions

And that is all the training you may require to master this test. Additionally, if you want, you must train yourself in the tables themselves. This usually provides an increase of the speed at which the conversion is done. For this purpose I would recommend the use of a mobile software like the Speed Memory Trainer (for Android or for iPhone).

Additionally, if you want to learn more training like this one, you can enroll our Speed Memory Training Camp for free.

Questions?

 

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