Posts Tagged ‘Yoga’

Laughter Primes Creative Problem Solving

The health benefits of regular laughter are broadly known.  Check out Laughter is the Best Medicine for a quick review.

What is not so widely known, is that laughter can also immediately boost brain function and cognitive performance, especially in the area of creativity.  For example, one study showed that watching 15-minute comedy video leaves you in a significantly more hopeful state.  Being hopeful enables creative thinking.

Being open to laughter, generating chuckles and getting the full effects from a good laugh are all skills we can learn.  One recent trend in this area is Laughter Yoga.   In this approach you practice an exercise that combines laughing for no specific reason with Yoga-based breathing techniques.  Not sure if it achieves the same effects as traditional laughter but it appears to. Perhaps it is even better!

Check out this video from the BBC on Laughter Yoga in London and you be the judge.

Interested to hear from readers that do laughter yoga or use other techniques to induce laughter on a regular basis for the purposes of health and improved cognitive performance.

15 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Mark Clare - July 19, 2011 at 8:52 pm

Categories: Problem Solving, Training   Tags:

Can 3 Minutes of Yoga Daily Improve Your Brain?

Doing Yoga can change how your brain functions.  Yoga as a worldview, exercise routine and even a lifestyle offers important options for improving the performance of our minds and brains.   The mind-enhancing effects of Yoga will be a regular topic on the Next Brain Blog.

A simple Yoga exercise has been in the news lately.  It involves holding your earlobes, placing your tongue on the roof of your mouth and rhythmically breathing while doing deep knee bends.  Sounds a bit strange but it does not take long.  According to many reports from teachers, doctors, therapists and scientists it produces results such as improved self-control, more mental energy and increased intelligence.

Check out this CBS news report for an introduction to the technique and what people are experiencing.

The news report mentions confirming EEG studies but I have not been able to locate those. I did find this post that offers this explanation:

“There is a lot of research to support that simple exercises like a breathing squat can improve  function, focus and efficiency in the brain.  Activation of specific acupressure points  from the earlobes during the squat exercise stimulates the brain on the opposite side.  Do the breathing squat exercise 21 times with the tongue touching the roof of the mouth. Exhale while squatting and inhale while standing up. Perform this movement with a 555 tempo. 5 seconds down-hold for 5 -5 seconds up. This simple exercise will activate chemicals in the brain, create synchronicity of the hemispheres, activate the pineal gland for awakeness and activate the pressure points of the ear lobes.   The combination of crossing the midline, as well as stimulating the pressure points creates a perfect storm of electrical brain activity that stimulates neuropathways and can literally make you think better.”

If you want to give it a try be sure you are fit enough to do deep knee beds. You can find very clear directions on exactly what to do on eHow. If you do try it out please post a comment and share your results and experience.

Source:  Exercise Image

12 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Mark Clare - February 11, 2010 at 12:50 am

Categories: Ancient Ways, IQ and EQ, Mental Focus, Training   Tags: