Yoga Nidra improves brain function, and quality of sleep, finds study

A recent study conducted at the Human Sleep Research Lab, Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Pune, has revealed that the ancient technique of ‘Yoga Nidra’ helps in improving the quality of sleep and brain functioning among people. 

“It was found that the yoga nidra practice showed improvement in sleep efficiency after four weeks, sleep efficiency being the time a person sleeps divided by the time they spend in bed for sleep,” said Col. Karuna Datta, Prof, and Head of the Department of Sports Medicine, AFMC, and principal investigator of the study.

While it was known that Yoga Nidra improved sleep in insomnia patients, and others living with diabetes, menstrual abnormalities, and post-traumatic stress disorder, its effect on sleep and cognition in healthy novices had not been documented so far. 

Altogether, 41 healthy young participants were recruited for the study. They recorded the day’s activities and sleep time at night in their diary before and after four weeks of yoga nidra practice. The tests showed improvement in reaction time without deterioration in accuracy. There was better recognition of anger and fear stimuli too. 

“This study holds promise for patients with mild learning disability or mild cognitive disorders. Since yoga nidra has simple practice guidelines, it has value in sleep management,” said Lt Gen (retd) Madhuri Kanitkar, Vice-Chancellor, Maharashtra University of Health Sciences. 

Yoga Nidra is a state of consciousness between waking and sleeping, induced by guided meditation. It is a more efficient form of rest and rehabilitation than conventional sleep. 


Managed by

Leave a Comment: