2015 Activities Report
Courtesy of Yoga Research Foundation (YRF)

Over the past two decades a significant collaboration has been with BHEL (Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited) at its industrial setup in Bhopal to conduct research in the area of yoga therapy. BHEL runs a multi- disciplinary hospital exclusively for its staff, retired staff and their families. In 2015, two ongoing projects were completed.

The objective of the first study was to observe the comparative effects of yoga and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) on depression. The study conducted over a six-month period was a progressive controlled trial with 20 subjects in each group: yoga, control and CBT.

The second project on Occupational Stress was undertaken with the Department of Occupational Health Services, however data collection has not been completed. Also a progressive controlled trial it involved 30 subjects each in a yoga and control group.

Jawaharlal Nehru School

Moving away from management of diseases, a project on the impact of yogic practices on factors influencing academic performance with graduating middle school students was undertaken at the Jawaharlal Nehru School patronized by BHEL. This project being conducted over one academic year will end in February of 2016. A pre-post design, 100 subjects from six divisions of Grade 8 have voluntarily chosen to participate in either the yoga or control group. Parameters include memory, concentration, creativity, self-confidence and behaviour.

Publications

2015 was especially important for YRF as it saw the revival of the YRF Journal. All research that has been conducted by YRF in its over thirty years of establishment will be published in a set of volumes. In this regard YRF actively worked to collate, compile and edit completed projects and create reports that are reader friendly and suitable for publishing.

Ongoing activities

The rest of the year was dedicated to the scoring, data-entry, analysis and reporting of projects that had been undertaken in previous years.

Noteworthy among them was a one-week project on bhakti yoga. The effect of kirtan was studied in this project. Undertaken by the department of Applied Yogic Science (AYS), Bihar Yoga Bharati (BYB), Munger in the year 2004, a total of 41 students participated in the study. It was a study conducted by students of yoga on students of yoga. Six feeling/emotion states of mind and three experiential states were observed pre and post a one-hour session of kirtan over a seven-day period. The states included:

  • Peace and contentment
  • Introversion
  • Devotion
  • Security
  • Emotionality
  • Positivity
  • Pranic experience
  • Emotional experience
  • Psychosomatic experience

The study found beneficial effects of kirtan.