How Sancy Suraj Became the Fastest Periodic Table Reciter in Singapore
Sancy Suraj is a Singaporean memory athlete and coach who holds multiple memory records, including the Singapore record for the Fastest Time to Recite the Periodic Table. His remarkable ability to memorize and recall vast amounts of information quickly and accurately has made him a well-known figure in the world of memory competitions and improvement. In this article, we’ll explore Sancy’s journey to becoming a memory athlete, his training techniques, and his future goals in the field of memory competitions and memory improvement.
Can you tell us about your journey to becoming a memory athlete?
My journey to becoming a memory athlete started when I was just a teenager. I was always fascinated by the human brain and its potential, and I wanted to explore how far I could push my own mental abilities. I started by reading books on memory improvement and practicing simple memory techniques like visualization and association. I soon discovered that with enough practice, I could remember vast amounts of information with ease.
As I continued to improve my memory skills, I started participating in memory competitions. I was inspired by the amazing feats of other memory athletes and wanted to push myself to achieve similar results. My first competition was in 2012, where I surprised myself by finishing second in the Singapore Memory Championships. This gave me the confidence to continue training and competing, and I’ve been doing so ever since.
Over the years, I’ve developed my own unique memory training techniques, which have helped me achieve my various memory records. I focus on a combination of visualization, association, and repetition to help me remember information quickly and accurately. I also believe that mental and physical health are important factors in memory performance, so I prioritize getting enough rest, exercise, and healthy food.
Overall, my journey to becoming a memory athlete has been one of hard work, dedication, and constant learning. I’m always looking for new ways to improve my memory skills, and I believe that anyone can develop these abilities with enough practice and the right mindset.
What motivated you to pursue memory competitions and records?
I’ve always been motivated by a desire to push myself to be the best I can be, and memory competitions and records provided me with a unique way to do that. When I first discovered memory sports, I was amazed by the incredible feats that memory athletes could achieve, and I knew that I wanted to be a part of that community.
As I began to compete in memory competitions, I found that the thrill of challenging myself to remember more and more information was incredibly addictive. The sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that comes with breaking a record or achieving a personal best is hard to describe, but it’s something that keeps me coming back to these competitions time and time again.
I’m also motivated by a desire to inspire others to push themselves to their own limits. I believe that anyone can develop their memory skills with enough practice and dedication, and I want to show others that it’s possible to achieve incredible things with their brains. By breaking records and achieving new personal bests, I hope to inspire others to push themselves to achieve their own goals and dreams.
Overall, my motivation for pursuing memory competitions and records comes from a deep passion for self-improvement and a desire to inspire others to do the same. I believe that memory sports provide a unique platform for achieving both of these goals, and I’m proud to be a part of this amazing community of memory athletes.
Can you walk us through your process for memorizing the periodic table and achieving the record?
Memorizing the periodic table was a challenging but rewarding process. To achieve the record, I used a combination of visualization, association, and repetition techniques.
First, I created a visual image for each element, based on its properties, name, and position in the table. I also used a mnemonic system to help me remember the order of the elements. For example, I used the phrase “Happy Henry Likes Beer But Can Not Obtain Food” to remember the first ten elements (H, He, Li, Be, B, C, N, O, F, Ne).
Next, I associated each visual image with a specific location in my “memory palace”, a mental construct that I use to store and retrieve information. I visualized myself walking through the palace and seeing each element in its designated location.
Finally, I repeated this process over and over again until I could recall the entire periodic table from memory. I also practiced typing out the names of the elements to ensure that I could spell them correctly.
Overall, the key to my success was a combination of a strong memory technique, intense focus, and consistent practice. By developing these skills over time, I was able to memorize the periodic table and achieve the record.
“Practice is essential for success in memorization. Whether you’re memorizing a list of words, a speech, or the periodic table, consistent practice is key. It’s important to develop a strong memory technique that works for you, and then dedicate time each day to practicing and reinforcing that technique. With consistent effort and focus, anyone can improve their memory skills and achieve impressive feats of memorization.”
How did you train your memory to become so adept at recalling vast amounts of information quickly?
My memory training is a combination of various techniques that I have developed and refined over the years. To recall vast amounts of information quickly, I use a combination of visualization, association, and repetition.
Visualization is a powerful tool for remembering information. I create vivid mental images that link the information I need to remember with something familiar or humorous. These images help me remember the information quickly and accurately. For example, to remember the periodic table, I created visual images that associate each element with an object or person. These images help me recall the element’s name and its atomic number quickly.
Association is another key memory technique that I use to remember vast amounts of information. By creating strong links between different pieces of information, I can remember them more easily. For example, I might associate the names of different elements with their properties, such as “sodium” with “salt” or “helium” with “balloons.” These associations help me remember the information quickly and accurately.
Repetition is also crucial in memory training. I repeat the information I need to remember frequently to help cement it in my memory. I might use flashcards, repetition exercises, or mental rehearsal to help me remember the information quickly and accurately.
Finally, it’s important to note that memory training is an ongoing process. I continually practice and refine my memory techniques to improve my skills. I also prioritize physical and mental health, as these factors play a critical role in memory performance. By combining these factors, I’ve been able to develop my memory skills to an exceptional level.
What advice would you give to others who are interested in improving their memory skills?
Firstly, I would advise anyone interested in improving their memory skills to start small and gradually build up their abilities. It’s important to practice regularly, but also to avoid overwhelming yourself with too much information at once. Simple techniques like visualizing information and making associations can be a great starting point.
Another key piece of advice I would offer is to stay curious and open-minded. Learning new things and exploring different areas of knowledge can help to keep the brain active and engaged, which in turn can improve memory performance. Additionally, it’s important to stay motivated and set goals for yourself. Having a clear objective to work towards can help to focus your efforts and give you a sense of accomplishment as you make progress.
Another important aspect of memory training is to take care of your physical and mental health. Getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, and exercising regularly are all important factors that can impact memory performance. Additionally, practicing relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing can help to reduce stress and improve focus.
Ultimately, improving memory skills requires consistent effort and practice. It’s important to be patient and not get discouraged by setbacks, as progress often comes in small increments. With the right mindset and a willingness to put in the work, anyone can develop impressive memory abilities and achieve their goals.
“Start small, stay curious, and be patient – improving your memory is a journey, not a destination.”
Sancy’s journey to becoming a memory athlete started when he was a teenager. He was fascinated by the human brain and its potential, and he wanted to explore how far he could push his own mental abilities. He started by reading books on memory improvement and practicing simple memory techniques like visualization and association. He soon discovered that with enough practice, he could remember vast amounts of information with ease.
Over the years, Sancy has participated in multiple memory competitions, where he has achieved impressive results. He holds multiple memory records, including the Singapore record for the Fastest Time to Recite the Periodic Table, as well as the record for reciting the most pi digits in Singapore. He has also represented Singapore in international memory competitions, where he has competed against some of the world’s top memory athletes.
In addition to his achievements as a memory athlete, Sancy is also a memory coach and trainer. He conducts memory workshops and gives talks to share his techniques and inspire others to pursue memory improvement. He believes that anyone can develop their memory skills with the right training and practice, and he wants to help people unlock their full potential.
Can you share any particular memory techniques or strategies that you find most helpful?
One of the most effective techniques I use is called the “memory palace” or the “method of loci”. This technique involves mentally placing items you want to remember along a familiar route or location, such as your house or a familiar street. By mentally visualizing each item at a different location, you create a vivid and memorable image that makes it easier to recall the item later.
Another technique I use frequently is association. This involves linking an item you want to remember with something else that is already firmly established in your memory. For example, if I want to remember the name “John”, I might associate it with a mental image of a person I know named John, or with a famous person with the same name.
In addition to these techniques, I also find that repetition and review are crucial for retaining information in the long term. When I’m trying to memorize something new, I’ll repeat it to myself several times and then review it periodically over the next few days or weeks. This helps to reinforce the information and make it stick in my memory.
Finally, I believe that visualization and creativity are important factors in memory performance. By creating vivid and memorable mental images, we can make even the most mundane information more interesting and engaging, which in turn makes it easier to remember. I’m always looking for new ways to visualize information and make it more memorable, whether that means using humor, absurdity, or unusual associations.
How do you prepare for a memory competition or record attempt?
The preparation process for me typically involves three key components: training, mental preparation, and physical well-being.
Firstly, training is crucial in memory competitions, and I spend a lot of time practicing various memory techniques to strengthen my memory and improve my recall speed. I often practice for several hours a day, focusing on memorizing different types of information, such as numbers, words, names, faces, and images. Additionally, I often participate in mock competitions to simulate the pressure and intensity of real competitions.
Secondly, mental preparation is also important for memory competitions. I spend time visualizing the competition environment and preparing mentally for the pressure and stress that comes with it. I also work on developing a positive mindset and building my confidence, which helps me perform at my best.
Lastly, physical well-being is an essential part of my preparation process. I believe that taking care of my body is crucial for maintaining mental sharpness, so I prioritize getting enough sleep, eating healthy food, and staying physically active. Exercise and meditation also help me stay calm and focused during competitions.
In addition to these three components, I also try to stay up-to-date with the latest memory techniques and research in the field, which helps me stay ahead of the competition. Overall, my preparation process is comprehensive and involves a combination of training, mental preparation, and physical well-being, which helps me perform at my best during competitions and record attempts.
What other memory records do you hold, and which was the most challenging to achieve?
I currently hold six memory records, including the Singapore record for reciting the most digits of pi, remembering the most random words in five minutes, and the fastest time to memorize a shuffled deck of cards. However, the most challenging record for me to achieve was probably the one I recently set for the fastest time to recite the periodic table.
Reciting the periodic table is a particularly challenging feat because it requires not only remembering the names of all the elements but also their correct order and spellings. To prepare for this record attempt, I spent months training my memory using various techniques, such as visualizing each element and associating it with a memorable image or story. I also practiced typing out the names of the elements as fast as possible to simulate the actual record attempt.
When it came time to attempt the record, I was feeling nervous but also excited to put my training to the test. The pressure was on to remember all 118 elements in the correct order and spelling within the time limit. I’m proud to say that I was able to achieve the record in 4 minutes and 19 seconds, which was a huge accomplishment for me.
Of all the memory records I’ve achieved, this one was particularly challenging because it required a different type of memory training than the others. It pushed me to think creatively and come up with new ways to remember complex information quickly and accurately. However, I believe that the key to achieving any memory record is consistent practice and a willingness to learn and improve. With enough dedication and effort, anyone can develop their memory skills to achieve remarkable results.
How has improving your memory skills benefited other areas of your life, such as work or academics?
Improving my memory skills has definitely benefited other areas of my life, including work and academics. In my professional life, being able to remember large amounts of information quickly and accurately has been a huge advantage. As a memory coach, I work with clients who want to improve their own memory skills, and I’m able to draw on my own experience to help them. I also do public speaking engagements and workshops, and having a great memory allows me to deliver my presentations with confidence and clarity.
In academics, my memory skills have helped me in many ways. When I was studying for my degree, I was able to remember large amounts of information quickly, which helped me do well on exams. I was also able to memorize formulas and equations, which came in handy during my studies in science and engineering. Additionally, my ability to memorize new vocabulary and concepts has helped me learn new languages, which is a great skill to have in today’s globalized world.
Beyond work and academics, improving my memory skills has also had a positive impact on my personal life. I’m able to remember important dates and events, which has helped me maintain strong relationships with family and friends. I’m also able to recall details from past experiences, which allows me to enjoy the present moment even more.
Overall, improving my memory skills has been a huge benefit in all areas of my life. It has helped me professionally, academically, and personally, and I believe that anyone can benefit from developing their own memory skills.
What are your future goals in the field of memory competitions and memory improvement?
As a memory athlete, I’m always looking for ways to push the boundaries of what is possible and to improve my memory skills even further. One of my future goals is to break more memory records and to compete in larger and more prestigious memory competitions around the world. I’m constantly training and refining my techniques, and I believe that I have the potential to achieve even greater feats in the future.
Another important goal for me is to share my knowledge and experience with others who are interested in memory improvement. I believe that anyone can develop their memory skills with the right training and practice, and I want to help people unlock their full potential. I plan to continue conducting memory workshops and giving talks to share my techniques and inspire others to pursue memory improvement.
Finally, I’m also interested in using memory techniques to improve other areas of my life, such as learning new languages or developing new skills. I believe that memory training can be applied to many different areas of life and can help people achieve their goals more quickly and efficiently. I’m excited to continue exploring the potential of memory improvement in my own life and in the lives of others.
In summary, my future goals in the field of memory competitions and memory improvement include breaking more records, competing in larger competitions, sharing my knowledge and experience with others, and applying memory techniques to other areas of my life. I’m passionate about exploring the potential of the human brain and unlocking the full power of memory, and I’m excited to continue pursuing these goals in the future.
“My future goals in memory improvement are to push the boundaries of what is possible, inspire others to develop their memory skills, and apply memory techniques to other areas of my life.”
Sancy Suraj’s journey to becoming a memory athlete and coach is a testament to the power of hard work, dedication, and consistent practice. His remarkable ability to memorize and recall vast amounts of information quickly and accurately has earned him multiple memory records and made him a respected figure in the world of memory improvement. As he continues to push the boundaries of what is possible in memory competitions and training, he also aims to share his knowledge and experience with others and inspire them to pursue their own memory improvement goals.