Maybe it’s about how to keep your brain in top shape? The solution offered by vibrantBrains, a San Francisco start-up, is to create a workout centre for the brain, patterned after a health club. Instead of exercising muscle groups via a series of circuit-training machines, vibrantBrains members hone their mental skills using a variety of computer software programs and other tools, for a monthly membership fee of USD 60. vibrantBrain’s health-club-for-the-mind approach should appeal to the millions of baby boomers who’ve spent their adult lives regularly visiting gyms. As they approach retirement age, they’ll want to maintain their mental agility, too, as attested by sales of Nintendo’s Brain Age, which sold 10 million copies.
If the mental health club idea catches on, the real competition eventually may come from traditional health clubs, which could add brain-exercise routines as easily as they’ve added yoga and martial arts instruction. However, even if that happens, there should be plenty of opportunities for start-ups to differentiate themselves—from rehabilitative clinics for the elderly to centers focused on mental and physical exercises for kids.