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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 10-15

Yoga for academic performance: A brain wave coherence analysis

Department of Yoga and Management, S-VYASA University, Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Tikhe Sham Ganpat
Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana University, Prashanti Kutiram, 19, Eknath Bhavan, Gavipuram Circle, Kempegowda Nagar, Bangalore - 560 019, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Background : Optimal stress brings out a student's best; however, extremes of stress can result in stress-induced disorders and deteriorating performance. Yoga is known to bring positive effect on personality development in students. Can yoga be beneficial in enhancing orderliness of brain functioning leading to increased academic performance in university students? Objective : To assess immediate effect of Nadi Shuddhi Pranayama (NSP), Bhramari Pranayama (BP), Om Meditation (OM), Pranic Energization Technique (PET), and Mind Sound Resonance Technique (MSRT) on brain wave coherence (BWC) in university students. Materials and Methods: Two hundred and thirty-four students in the range of 18-30 years of age and 21.63 ± 3.60 (mean ± SD) years of mean age were selected for the present study from a university at Bangalore, India. They were divided in two groups, 117 subjects in each group: yoga group (NSP = 15, BP = 30, OM = 29, PET = 27, and MSRT = 16) and control group (NSP = 15, BP = 30, OM = 29, PET = 27, and MSRT = 16). Brain wave coherence (BWC) data were collected immediately before and after the intervention (pre recorded session of 24 minutes in NSP, BP, OM, PET and MSRT to yoga group and sitting quietly with the eyes closed for the same duration in control group) using Brain Master 2 Channel EEG version 2.0 for clinical from Bio Medical Instruments, Inc., Warren, Michigan, USA. Results: The significant increase in delta was observed in BP, OM, PET, and MSRT. Similarly, significant increase in theta was also observed in BP and PET. Moreover, significant increase in alpha was found in BP and OM whereas significant increase in beta was noted in BP. It was also recorded that there was significant increase in gamma in NSP, BP and MSRT. There was no significant change observed in control group of yogic practices. Conclusion: The immediate effect NSP, BP, OM, PET, and MSRT on BWC compared with controls shows that these yogic practices are related with increased orderliness of brain functioning, which is essential for good academic performance. Additional well-designed studies are needed before a strong recommendation can be made.

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