20-minute Hatha yoga session stimulates brain function immediately

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Neha Gothe, Professor of Kinesiology, Wayne State University was surprised by her own yoga research results.
Gothe and her colleagues had 30 young female study subjects who were undergraduates at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. These subjects were tested on the speed and accuracy of working memory and inhibitory control, two important measures of brain function. Then they were asked to do a 20-minute session of aerobic exercises and retested. No improvement was found. However, when the subjects did a 20-minute session of yoga and breathing exercises and were retested they performed significantly better immediately after the yoga session.

The detail of the findings is published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health.

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