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The Science Behind Yoga
Dr. Sat Bir Singh Khalsa is interested in the ways yoga allows us to self-regulate multiple components of our internal well-being. Dr. Khalsa is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, an instructor of Kundalini Yoga, and the Research Director for the Kundalini Research Institute and the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health. He has been conducting yoga research since 2001, and his topics of study focus on the applicability of yoga in dealing with insomnia, stress, anxiety spectrum disorders, and mental health in public schools and the workplace. He directs the annual IAYT Symposium on Yoga Research and is editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Yoga Therapy and chief editor of The Principles and Practice of Yoga in Health Care. In this video, he explains how neural imaging techniques serve to illuminate what areas of the brain yoga activates. This provides insight into how yoga impacts the activity, biochemistry, and structure of the brain. Dr. Khalsa stresses the importance of practicality, and that it is not only important to show that yoga works, but to also show the necessity of understanding HOW yoga works. On top of these forward thinking methodologies outlined in the video, Dr. Khalsa also breaks down the basic elements of yoga practice and their benefits. The relation between yoga and fitness, breath-regulation, self-regulation as a means of controlling one’s internal state, and mind-body awareness, or mindfulness, being conscious of one’s internal state. He notes how we are aware of these benefits, but the next step is understanding how yoga helps make them a reality.
09:51 | 2019