Kayt Sukel, journalist and science writer, shares insights into the neuroscience of risk-taking and how play during childhood and adulthood impacts the way we make decisions as adults.
“There is great benefit to taking risks in both work and play—even when they result in you falling flat on your face.”
— Kayt Sukel
Kayt Sukel tackles interesting and often taboo subjects in her writing, including love, sex, out of body experiences, and adventurous single mother travel. Based in Houston, her work has appeared in a diverse array of publications including the Atlantic Monthly, New Scientist, and National Geographic Traveler. She is a frequent contributor to the Travel Savvy Mom website, as well as the Dana Foundation’s science publications. Her first book, Dirty Minds (retitled as This Is Your Brain On Sex in paperback), is an irreverent and funny tome that takes on the age-old question, “What is love?” from a neurobiological perspective. Her forthcoming book is about the science of risk taking.
The Rewards of Risk-Taking
Q&A with Kayt on the TEDMED blog
The Art of Risk: The New Science of Courage, Caution and Chance
Sukel K. National Geographic. 2016
Risky play prepares kids for life
Voce A. The Guardian. 2008.
Free Range Kids
How to raise safe, self-reliant children (without going nuts with worry)
The neurogenetics of exploration and exploitation: Prefrontal and striatal dopaminergic components
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Evidence for a distributed hierarchy of action representation in the brain.
Grafton ST, Hamilton AF. Human Movement Science. 2007;36:590-616.
Extended practice of a motor skill is associated with reduced metabolic activity in M1
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London taxi drivers and bus drivers: A structural MRI and neuropsychological analysis
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Extensive piano practicing has regionally specific effects on white matter development
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Practice effects in the brain: Changes in cerebral activation after working memory practice depend on task demands
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Optimal Experience: Psychological studies of flow in consciousness
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Neural substrates of spontaneous music performance: An fMRI study of jazz improvisation
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Attention training and attention state training
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Self-efficacy, risk taking and performance in rock climbing
Llewellyn DJ, Sanchez X, Asghar A, Jones G. Personality and Individual Differences. 2008;45: 75-81