Fourth annual Aspen Brain Lab this Saturday at The Aspen Institute

Erica Robbie
The Aspen Times
The fourth annual Aspen Brain Lab is set for this Saturday at The Aspen Institute.


What: Aspen Brain Lab

When: Saturday, June 23. Session I IS 8:30 a.m. TO 12:30 p.m.; Session II IS 2 to 5 p.m.

Where: The Aspen Institute

Cost: General admission $250 per session; VIP pass $425

To purchase tickets, visit

Performance-enhancement coach Ed Harrold believes the secret to “stall aging” lies within one of humans’ most seemingly banal actions: breathing.

“How you breathe and the quality of your breath plays a huge role in what your heart rate will be and your cardiovascular health,” Harrold said. “Folks could be 50 years old but have the heartbeat of an 82-year-old based on their breathing.”

On Saturday, Harrold and 14 other health experts will discuss the latest breakthroughs in brain science as part of the fourth annual AspenBrainLab.

The program will address four specific areas of the brain — creative brain, impaired brain, healthy brain and future brain — throughout two sessions that will take place at the Aspen Institute.

AspenBrainLab founder Glenda Greenwald said her goal in creating the event is to educate “as many people as possible about the brain; how it works, what it needs and how it heals.”

“There’s very few places where you can go and get the latest breakthroughs in brain science,” Greenwald said. “But of course, everybody wants to live longer, healthier and more youthfully.”

For Harrold, this means teaching people to practice breathing through their nose and not their mouth.

“When we breathe through our mouth, it elevates aging,” he said. “We overheat the body, wear out the brain and create acid and inflammation in the body.”

Harrold said nostril breathing “is a wonderful way to stall aging and learn how to control your thoughts so your thoughts don’t control you.”

Physical therapist and strength coach Peter Holman, who also will speak at AspenBrainLab, believes the key to a healthy brain can be found in taking a holistic approach to exercise.

Contrary to research that says endurance exercise is best for brain health, Holman will explain why a well-rounded exercise routine that also involves stretching, strength training and balance is equally critical for the brain’s development.

“If you really want a healthy brain — not just for processing speed, retention and assimilation — but if you want an overall better outlook on life, these exercises are very important,” he said.

Holman, who believes that “sitting is bad,” also will show audience members his favorite exercises and get people up and moving as part of his presentation, “Exercise and Brain Health: Neurogenesis and Beyond.”

For more information or to view the full agenda for this year’s AspenBrainLab, visit