The benefits of meditation are well known and emerging research seems to indicate what we have known for a long time – that meditation is good for our physical and mental health.
Now a new research from a Texas Tech University faculty member shows that it can significantly improve attention, working memory, emotional regulation, self-control, cognitive performance, and reduce stress.
Yi-Yuan Tang, a professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, has developed a novel method of mindfulness meditation which he calls Integrative Body-Mind Training (IBMT).
IBMT avoids struggles to control thought, relying instead on a state of restful alertness that allows for a high degree of body-mind awareness while receiving instructions from a qualified coach, who provides body-adjustment guidance, mental imagery and other techniques while soothing music plays in the background. Thought control is achieved gradually through posture, relaxation, body-mind harmony and balance.
Tang says the specific parts of the brain most affected by IBMT is the anterior cingulate cortex and adjacent medial prefrontal cortex. These parts are mainly involved in self-control ability. Tang believes that since IBMT can improve self-control effectively, it may help prevent and treat mental disorders. In the education field, since IBMT improves attention, cognitive performance and self-control, it can help those with ADHD or learning difficulties to improve academic performance and school behavior.
The next step in Tang’s research will be to engage in more studies to fully understand brain-body mechanisms of mindfulness and their applications.
Source: Science Daily