Date: 6.09.2011 (Tuesday)
Venue: Seminar Room B, AS7-01-17
Speaker: Maria Kozhevnikov
Title: Temperature and EEG changes during g-tummo meditation: Legend and reality
Ten experienced Tibetan meditators participated in research exploring temperature increase and EEG activity associated with two types of g-tummo meditation, Forceful and Gentle Breath. There were significant increases in alpha, beta, and gamma power during the Forceful Breath meditation, and core body temperature (CBT) increased by up to 2.3°C reaching the zone of slight fever, whereas during Gentle Breath meditation, CBT was maintained and only beta power increased. While the rate of temperature increase correlated with the meditators’ ability to hold their breath, the maximum temperature increases correlated with alpha power during meditation. Interestingly, participants were able to increase their CBT significantly during baseline conditions utilizing only the breathing and other somatic techniques, but not the visualizations that to practitioners form the core of the meditative practice. This finding suggests that non-meditators may also be able to learn to regulate their CBT, which has implications for improving health and cognitive performance under certain conditions.
About the speaker:
I am interested in neural mechanisms of visual/spatial imagery as well as in individual differences in basic information processing capacities (e.g. the ability to generate, inspect, or transform visual/spatial images). In addition, I am interested in examining how these individual differences affect more complex activities, such as spatial navigation, learning and problem solving in mathematics and sciences as well as in exploring the ways to train visual/spatial imagery skills and design learning technologies that can accommodate individual differences and learning styles.