Researchers at the University of Illinois assessed the effect of yoga, compared to aerobic exercise, on cognition.
Interestingly, after just one 20 min session, the study participants had significantly improved reaction times and cognition – particularly when compared to aerobic exercise, which didn’t bring about any improvement.
Lead researcher Neha Gothe said several factors could have contributed to the results: “Enhanced self-awareness that comes with meditational exercises is just one of the possible mechanisms. Besides, meditation and breathing exercises are known to reduce anxiety and stress, which in turn can improve scores on some cognitive tests.”
There you go! Time to get your stretch on?
Ref: Gothe et al. J Phys Act Health. 2013 May;10(4):488-95.