International Journal of Yoga
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   2013| January-June  | Volume 6 | Issue 1  
    Online since January 12, 2013

 
 
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REVIEW ARTICLE
Sudarshan kriya yoga: Breathing for health
Sameer A Zope, Rakesh A Zope
January-June 2013, 6(1):4-10
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105935  PMID:23440614
Breathing techniques are regularly recommended for relaxation, stress management, control of psychophysiological states, and to improve organ function. Yogic breathing, defined as a manipulation of breath movement, has been shown to positively affect immune function, autonomic nervous system imbalances, and psychological or stress-related disorders. The aim of this study was to assess and provide a comprehensive review of the physiological mechanisms, the mind-body connection, and the benefits of Sudarshan Kriya Yoga (SKY) in a wide range of clinical conditions. Various online databases searched were Medline, Psychinfo, EMBASE, and Google Scholar. All the results were carefully screened and articles on SKY were selected. The references from these articles were checked to find any other potentially relevant articles. SKY, a unique yogic breathing practice, involves several types of cyclical breathing patterns, ranging from slow and calming to rapid and stimulating. There is mounting evidence to suggest that SKY can be a beneficial, low-risk, low-cost adjunct to the treatment of stress, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, stress-related medical illnesses, substance abuse, and rehabilitation of criminal offenders.
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES
The effect of pranayama on test anxiety and test performance
Azadeh Nemati
January-June 2013, 6(1):55-60
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105947  PMID:23439436
Objectives: In an educational setting, anxiety is often experienced by students when taking a test; which is called 'test anxiety'. This study intends to investigate the effect of doing pranayama on test anxiety and test performance. Materials and Methods: The participants consisted of 107 MA students who were randomly assigned to the control and experimental groups. The students of the experimental group practiced pranayama for one full semester. Sarason's (1980) test anxiety scale was given to both the control and experimental groups in the final session, before taking the examination. Results: After practicing pranayama, only 33% of the participants of the experimental group experienced high test anxiety, while this percentage was nearly twice in the control group (66.7%). Furthermore, the result of the t-test for test anxiety and test performance showed that the students of the experimental group had significantly lower mean test anxiety scores (M = 16.00) as compared to the students of the control group (M = 19.31). Also, the test performance scores of the experimental group were higher when compared with the control group. There was a negative correlation between the final test performance and test anxiety (r = −.204, P < .05). Conclusions: Pranayama seems to have a significant positive effect on test anxiety and test performance. It could be used as an important technique by students prior to their examinations, to reduce their test anxiety and increase their test performance.
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Effect of the integrated approach of yoga therapy on platelet count and uric acid in pregnancy: A multicenter stratified randomized single-blind study
R Jayashree, A Malini, A Rakhshani, HR Nagendra, S Gunasheela, R Nagarathna
January-June 2013, 6(1):39-46
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105945  PMID:23440456
Background: Yoga improves maternal and fetal outcomes in pregnancy. Platelet Count and Uric acid (Ua) are valuable screening measures in high-risk pregnancy. Aim: To examine the effect of yoga on platelet counts and serum Ua in high-risk pregnancy. Materials and Methods: This stratified randomized controlled trial, conducted by S-VYASA University at St. John's Medical College Hospital and Gunasheela Maternity Hospital, recruited 68 women with high-risk pregnancy (30 yoga and 38 controls) in the twelfth week of pregnancy. The inclusion criteria were: Bad obstetrics history, twin pregnancies, maternal age < 20 or > 35 years, obesity (BMI > 30), and genetic history of pregnancy complications. Those with normal pregnancy, anemia (< 10 grams%dl), h/o clotting disorders; renal, hepatic or heart disease; seizure disorder; or structural abnormalities in the pelvis, were excluded. The yoga group practiced simple meditative yoga (three days / week for three months). Results: At baseline, all women had normal platelet counts (> 150×10 9 /L) with a decrease as pregnancy advanced. Ua (normal at baseline) increased in both groups. No one developed abnormal thrombocytopenia or hyperuricemia. Healthy reduction in platelet count (twelfth to twentieth week) occurred in a higher (P < 0.001, Chi 2 test) number of women in the yoga group than the control group. A similar trend was found in uric acid. Significantly lesser number of women in the yoga group (n = 3) developed pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH) / pre-eclampsia (PE) than those in the control group (n = 12), with absolute risk reduction (ARR) by 21%. Conclusion: Antenatal integrated yoga from the twelfth week is safe and effective in promoting a healthy progression of platelets and uric acid in women with high-risk pregnancy, pointing to healthy hemodilution and better physiological adaptation.
  4,539 23 1
Reducing psychological distress and obesity through Yoga practice
S Dhananjai, Sadashiv , Sunita Tiwari, Krishna Dutt, Rajjan Kumar
January-June 2013, 6(1):66-70
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105949  PMID:23439736
Yoga practice has been effectively prescribed in conjunction with other medical and yogic procedures in the management of severe psychosomatic diseases, including cancer, bronchial asthma, colitis, peptic and ulcer. It improves strength and flexibility, and may help control physiological variables such as blood pressure, lipids, respiration, heart rate, and metabolic rate to improve overall exercise capacity. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of Yogic Practice on anxiety/depression associated with obesity. Patients were recruited from the Department of Physiology, C.S.M. Medical University (erstwhile KGMU), Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India. A total of 272 subjects were divided into two groups: 1) group of 205 subjects (with yogic practice) and 2) a control group of 67 subjects (with aerobic exercise). Assessment of anxiety and depression were done by Hamilton Rating Scale.
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Yoga experience as a predictor of psychological wellness in women over 45 years
N Moliver, EM Mika, MS Chartrand, RE Haussmann, SBS Khalsa
January-June 2013, 6(1):11-19
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105937  PMID:23440029
Background: Although high levels of subjective well-being (SWB) are common in old age, a subset of older individuals is disproportionately vulnerable to negative affect. Yoga has been shown to have many short-term benefits, but researchers have not determined whether a long-term or frequent yoga practice increasingly protects older women from low levels of psychological well-being. Aims: The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which psychological attitudes, transcendence, mental mastery, and subjective vitality in a sample of female yoga practitioners over 45 years varied according to the length and frequency of yoga practice. Materials and Methods: We administered online surveys to a non-probability sample of 211 female yoga practitioners 45 to 80. We used weighted least squares regression analyses to evaluate the relationship of extent of yoga experience to the outcome variables after accounting for age and lifestyle factors. Results: Participants had practiced yoga for as long as 50 years and for up to 28 h per week. There were significant positive relationships between yoga experience and all outcome variables. These significant relationships remained after accounting for age and lifestyle factors. When we computed yoga experience in terms of total calendar years, without accounting for hours of practice, significant relationships did not remain. Transcendence of the ordinary was the most strongly associated with current yoga practice frequency, and positive psychological attitudes were the most strongly associated with total lifetime hours of practice. Conclusions: Among a non-probability sample of female yoga practitioners between 45 and 80 years, increased yoga experience predicted increased levels of psychological well-being. Results showed a dose-response effect, with yoga experience exercising an increasingly protective effect against low levels of SWB and vitality.
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SHORT COMMUNICATIONS
Effects of yoga on functional capacity and well being
Pooja Akhtar, Sujata Yardi, Murtaza Akhtar
January-June 2013, 6(1):76-79
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105952  PMID:23439856
Yoga has proven beneficial effects on various health domains including musculoskeletal conditions, cardiopulmonary conditions through the practice of asana and pranayamas as well as on mental health, as it is known to enhance the body-and mind coordination. There is paucity of data on the effect of yoga on functional capacity in literature using 6 min walk test. The present study aims to look at the effect of yoga on 6-min walked distance, rating of perceived exertion (RPE), recovery time following the walk and state of well being. This is a hospital-based longitudinal study where 30 physiotherapy students of the age group 18 - 22 years of either sex were enrolled. Subjects having musculoskeletal problems, cardio respiratory disease and those who were not willing to volunteer were excluded They received Yoga intervention in form of Yogic practices which included a combination of asanas, pranayamas and omkar chanting for 1 h for 30 sessions. A baseline 6-min walk test was conducted on subjects and the 6-min walked distance, rating of perceived exertion (RPE) on modified Borg's scale were recorded. The baseline state of well-being was noted using the Warwick- Edinburgh mental well-being scale and similar recording was done post intervention after 30 sessions. Of the 30 subjects, there were no drop outs as these were committed college students. Of them, 24 were females and 6 were males with a mean age of 21.5 years SD 2.38. Statistically significant improvements were observed in 6-min walk distance (P value = 0.000), RPE (P value < 0.000), recovery time (P value < 0.000) and sense of well being score (P value < 0.000). Yoga practices are beneficial in improving the functional capacity in young healthy adults. Yoga can very well be incorporated in medical practice for increasing the patient's functional capacity, for those who have limitations in performing aerobic training due to various health reasons. The improved state of well being motivates the patients to adhere to yogic practices.
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Effect of yoga exercise therapy on oxidative stress indicators with end-stage renal disease on hemodialysis
Lorenzo Gordon, Donovan A McGrowder, Yeiny T Pena, Elsa Cabrera, Marilyn B Lawrence-Wright
January-June 2013, 6(1):31-38
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105944  PMID:23440311
Background: Oxidative stress promotes endothelial dysfunction and atherosclerosis in chronic renal disease. Objectives: This study investigated the impact of Hatha yoga on oxidative stress indicators and oxidant status, in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) on hemodialysis. Design: This prospective randomized study consisted of 33 ESRD patients in the Hatha yoga exercise group who were matched with 35 ESRD patients in the control group. Outcome Measures: The oxidative stress indicators (malondialdehyde - MDA, protein oxidation - POX, phospholipase A2 - PLA2 activity) and the oxidative status (superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase activities) were determined in the blood samples taken at the pre-hemodialysis treatment, at baseline (0 months) and after four months. Results: In patients in the Hatha yoga exercise group, lipid peroxidation, as indicated by MDA decreased by 4.0% after four months (P = 0.096). There was also a significant reduction in the activity of PLA from 2.68 ± 0.02 IU / L to 2.34 IU / L (− 12.7%; P = 0.010) and POX from 2.28 ± 0.02 nmol / mg to 2.22 ± 0.01 nmol / mg (− 22.6%; P = 0.0001). The activity of SOD significantly increased from 12.91 ± 0.17 U / L to 13.54 ± 0.15 U / L (4.65%; P = 0.0001) and catalase from 79.83 ± 0.63 U / L to 80.54 ± 0.80 U / L (0.90%; P = 0.0001). There was a significant correlation between the pre-hemodialysis oxidative stress parameters at the zero month and after four months for the activities of PLA (r = 0.440), catalase (r = 0.872), and SOD (r = 0.775). Conclusions: These findings suggest that the Hatha yoga exercise has therapeutic, preventative, and protective effects in ESRD subjects, by decreasing oxidative stress.
  3,667 16 -
EDITORIAL
From meditation to dhyana
TM Srinivasan
January-June 2013, 6(1):1-3
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105934  PMID:23436967
  2,938 15 -
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Comparison of lymphocyte apoptotic index and qualitative DNA damage in yoga practitioners and breast cancer patients: A pilot study
Amritanshu Ram, Birendranath Banerjee, Vadiraja S Hosakote, Raghavendra M Rao, Raghuram Nagarathna
January-June 2013, 6(1):20-25
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105938  PMID:23440089
Background: Yoga is found to be effective in reducing stress levels and radiation-induced DNA damage, and improving the quality of life, in breast cancer patients. The present study was aimed at comparing the apoptotic index (AI) and DNA damage of advanced yoga practitioners with those of breast cancer patients. Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional pilot study compared three groups (n = 9 each) of age-matched subjects viz. (1) Carcinoma breast patients in stage II or III undergoing radiation therapy after completing three cycles of chemotherapy; (2) Senior yoga practitioners who were practicing asanas, pranayama and meditation daily for more than 10 years; and (3) Normal healthy volunteers. Peripheral blood lymphocytes were isolated, and qualitative DNA damage (QDD) and AI were evaluated by single-cell gel electrophoresis assay. Approximately 500 cells were counted in each case. Number of cells that were normal, undergoing apoptosis, and with DNA damage were categorized and percentages were calculated. Results: Data being normally distributed, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed significant interaction between groups in AI (P = 0.016) and QDD (P = 0.045). On post-hoc analysis using Scheffe test, AI was significantly lower in non-yoga volunteers as compared with the breast cancer group (P = 0.019) and QDD was significantly lower in yoga practitioners when compared with non-yoga volunteers (P = 0.047). Conclusion: Cellular dysfunction (QDD) requires restorative mechanisms (AI) to restore the system to a balance. The results of this pilot study show trends, which indicate that in ill-health, there is inadequate restorative mechanisms (AI) although dysfunction (QDD) is high. Through regular practice of yoga, cellular dysfunction can be lowered, thus necessitating reduced restorative mechanisms. AI and QDD could also be useful indicators for predicting the three zones of health viz. disease, health, and positive health.
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Yogic practice and diabetes mellitus in geriatric patients
K Beena Rani, E Sreekumaran
January-June 2013, 6(1):47-54
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105946  PMID:23440675
Background: Stress has negative effect on health and type 2 diabetes patients may be at an increased risk. Abnormally high levels of free radicals and the simultaneous decline of antioxidant defense mechanisms can increase lipid peroxidation and insulin resistance. The objective of the present study was to demonstrate the efficacy of yogic practice in geriatric patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and also to compare the efficacy with the state of glycaemic control. Materials and Methods: Seventy three (73) healthy elderly patients of type 2 diabetes mellitus in the age group of 60 to 70 years with a history of diabetes for 5 to 10 years and with poor glycaemic control (HbA 1c >8 %) residing in Kozhikode district were recruited for the study. The subjects were divided into three groups according to their glycaemic control. Group I with HbA 1c 8.6-9.7 %, group II with HbA 1c 9.8-10.7 % and group III with HbA 1c 10.8-12.7 %. Participants did yogic practice under the supervision of experienced trainer, daily 90 minutes and for three months. Biochemical estimation of HbA 1c, glucose, lipid profile, cortisol, ferritin, malondialdehyde (MDA) and catalase activity were carried out on 0 day and 90 th day. Seventy patients participated in a comparable control session. Results: The participants in the test group showed statistically significant (P < 0.001) decrease in glucose, HbA 1c, lipids, cortisol, ferritin, MDA and significant increase in catalase activity after yogic practice. Conclusions: Yoga may improve risk profiles induced by stress in geriatric patients with type 2 diabetes and may have promise for the prevention or delay in diabetes complications. And at all stages of the disease a significant improvement can be achieved by yogic practice in geriatric diabetes.
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SHORT COMMUNICATIONS
A preliminary clinical evaluation of external snehan and asanas in the patients of sciatica
Akhilesh K Singh, Om P Singh
January-June 2013, 6(1):71-75
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105950  PMID:23439799
Lower back pain radiating to either on one leg or both legs along the course of sciatic nerve is a common ailment in the clinical practice, this type of peculiar symptomatology is termed as "Sciatica" in modern medicine. The medical treatment is unsatisfactory for both the patient and the neurosurgeons, as the surgical treatment has its own hazards and the cost of the surgical procedure and medical treatment is prohibitory to most of the Indian patients. Hence, most of the patients present themselves to the practitioners of Indian medicines like Ayurveda and yoga. This study was designed to evaluate the preliminary clinical effects of Bahya Snehan and Asanas in the patients of sciatica. This was a prospective randomized active control trial. A total of 60 participants showing classical symptoms of Sciatica between 18 and 65 years of age were randomly assigned to receive Ayurvedic or Yogic measure. One group received Snehan (external) with Bhujang and Shalabh Asana while another group received Bhujang and Salabh Asana only. Both groups practiced supervised intervention for 4 weeks. The signs and symptoms like Katishool (pain), tenderness, Stambha (rigidity), difficulty in walking, pain on bending forward were graded and interpreted at the end of the trail Significant improvement was observed in both groups before and after external Snehan with Bhujang and Shalabh Asana and in another group Bhujang and Salabh Asana only. Conclusions: Both groups, one with Snehan with asanas and the second with asanas only showed significant improvement in the patients of sciatica (Gridhrasi).
  2,851 13 -
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Effects of yoga practice on acumeridian energies: Variance reduction implies benefits for regulation
Niharika Nagilla, Alex Hankey, HR Nagendra
January-June 2013, 6(1):61-65
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105948  PMID:23439630
Background and Objective: This paper concerns mechanisms responsible for the efficacy of yoga medicine, traditionally attributed to the enlivenment of prana. Our strategy was to investigate levels of Qi in acupuncture meridians, since Qi is usually considered equivalent to prana. Materials and Methods: Electrodermal measurements at acumeridian endpoints (Tsing points) were made on 32 healthy individuals, pre and post 3 weeks yoga lifestyle program using AcuGraph 3 (an instrument in wide use). A previous study found that inherent errors prevent AcuGraph from precisely evaluating Qi energies in single meridians, so group results are reported: (a) Energy levels, (b) energy stability, and (c) energy balance between (i) Yin/Yang meridians, (ii) upper and lower, and (iii) left and right regions of the body. Results: Significant improvements were observed in all but energy stability, supporting the ideas that yoga enlivens prana, and that balance in meridians constitutes health. For balance variables, the study observed shifts toward normal at both ends of variable distributions, reducing standard deviations: post-intervention percentages of subjects with values in the 'healthy' range increased. Conclusion: Yoga improved regulation of Qi levels in acumeridian meridians as well as increasing them.
  2,785 16 1
Voluntary heart rate reduction following yoga using different strategies
BR Raghavendra, S Telles, NK Manjunath, KK Deepak, KV Naveen, P Subramanya
January-June 2013, 6(1):26-30
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105940  PMID:23440267
Background/Aims: One month of yoga training has been shown to reduce the pulse rate voluntarily without using external cues. Hence, the present study was designed to understand the strategies used by yoga practitioners and autonomic changes associated with voluntary heart rate reduction. Materials and Methods: Fifty volunteers (group mean age ± S.D., 25.4 ± 4.8 years; 25 males) were assessed in two trials on separate days. Each trial was for 12 minutes, with a 'pre' state and 'during' state of 6 minutes each. For both trials the 'pre' state was relaxation with eyes closed. In the 'during' state of Trial I, subjects were asked to voluntarily reduce their heart rate using a strategy of their choice. From their responses to specific questions it was determined that 22 out of 50 persons used breath regulation as a strategy. Hence, in the 'during' state of Trial II, subjects were asked to voluntarily reduce their heart rate by breath regulation. Results: In the first trial, the heart rate was reduced by an average of 19.6 beats per minute and in the second trial (with breath regulation exclusively) an average decrease of 22.2 beats per minute was achieved. Conclusions: Hence, the strategy used did not markedly alter the outcome.
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BOOK REVIEW
The science of Yoga: The risks and the rewards
BR Raghavendra
January-June 2013, 6(1):82-83
  2,250 13 -
LETTERS TO EDITOR
Mindfulness, an integrated approach for cessation of smoking in workplace
Mahendra P Sharma, Manoj Kumar Sharma
January-June 2013, 6(1):80-80
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105953  PMID:23436968
  2,089 21 -
Intellectual disabilities and yoga
Satendra Singh
January-June 2013, 6(1):80-81
DOI:10.4103/0973-6131.105954  PMID:23436969
  1,859 16 -
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