Hi Philodoof. I am not sure if they peaked or not. That's a totally personal question, for them to answer. Only themselves are the ones to know their situation exactly. And they probably know, if they peaked or not. I don't want to judge. I hope this is a serious forum and not the BILD to write false information and insubstantial speculation
What I'm trying to say is that there is no definite answer to this question (about peaking). Some people mentally peak at 20 (during university/college studies), some at 25, some at 35 or 40. It's not universal. But we are talking about mental agility and energy, and not for total knowledge, wisdom and experience. Because older people surely have more knowledge.
But also there are exeptions to this general rule. For example, another fellow mental calculator Jan Van Koningsveld (Dutch-German, now at age 46
) he did this year his best mental performance with 96 Calendar dates per minute. At least that's what I read. That's his best score ever.
Also, in other Mind Sports, in Chess, Vishy Anand was World Champion until 2012 at age of 43
. Wilhelm Steinitz was Champion in 1894 at age 58
. Emanuel Lasker Champion in 1921 at age 52
(source : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Chess_Championship
) Also, from wiki records "The oldest of chess grandmaster ever was Enrico Paoli, who was awarded the title in 1996 at the age of 88! " Also, in MCWC-2010, I competed against an American guy (Mr.Jerry Newport at age 64
) who won all the calculation surprise tasks easily (" Best Vielseitigster Kopfrechner" http://www.recordholders.org/de/events/ ... sults.html
), and I was 12th overall at age 26 back then in surprise, but a 64 y.o. was much better than all of us competitors, in 6 such suprise tasks. So yes, there are many exceptions to this rule
of 'youth', even in mind sports.
However, biologically, there is an objective difference between the brain of a 20 y.o and a 70 y.o. person, because in the latter case, his cells have divided more times, and more oxidative damage accumulates. Boris who is a neuroscientist at Max-Planck institute surely know more about such facts.
But if I view it philosophically, it is a fact of life that we cannot be forever 20 years old. So, we gotta take the best out the specific age we are every year, and as we know, time always moves forward as a dimension
in our physical world. In 2016, we all will add 1+
year to our lives.
In my opinion, as the years pass on, we should add more quality
, let it be more "quality training", more quality in friends, more quality in the books we read, and generally manage our (finite) time better. There are many 'time management' books and I like this subject a lot because it teaches how to organise the limited time in our modern lives and how to index information more efficiently.
So, ultimately I think that if a 40 y.o. makes high quality training, yes, it's possible to beat a 20 y.o., but it takes a bit more effort sometimes. So probably, the Top German Memory guys, Boris, Hannes, Christian and Simon all can surely make a huge comeback next year but it may take a few extra effort at least for the Top/ 1st WMC place (for being the top winner), because there are new parameters and always newcomers/ new competitors to join every year the memory championship bandwagon. Like I said, there may be so many guys in China right now, that may train all day, all the time, for 1 year and try they to beat new records (like Shi Binbin did with 31 decks of hour-cards, a new WR). You also see all these Mongolian juniors and kids willing to break records, so the future country rankings may be totally different than what it is now.