From the New York Times…
When athletes learn how to be more aware of their bodies they may also change the workings of their brains and become more resilient to stress, according to a new study of the effects of mindfulness meditation on brain function in serious athletes.
The study, which was published recently in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, had its unusual origins in a balk at the starting gate by one of the top riders for the U.S. Men’s National BMX team. Watching, his baffled coach wondered how he could help his riders to better handle the anxiety and psychological rigors of competition. So he approached scientists affiliated with the department of psychiatry and the Center for Mindfulness at the University of California, San Diego, near where the team trains, and asked if they might be interested in working with and studying his seven-man team.
From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette…
By Jacob Axelrad
From the Beatles’ bouts with Transcendental Meditation to brand names such as lululemon and YogaRat, mind-body relaxation methods have long been pop-culture staples. But ongoing studies aim to show that a calmer mind and a more acute awareness of one’s surroundings can improve physical health, according to research based at Carnegie Mellon University.
Mindfulness-based stress reduction, a 12-week program developed in the 1970s by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, uses techniques from Buddhism to train participants in skills they can apply to their everyday lives, to help them deal with stress, pain and illness. The skills involve finely tuned attention to thoughts and emotions and their bodies’ reactions to physical sensations.
Continue reading on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.