Effects of Transcendental Meditation practice on brain functioning and stress reactivity in college students
International Journal of Psychophysiology 71 (2009) 170-176
A b s t r a c t
This randomized controlled trial investigated effects of Transcendental Meditation (TM) practice on Brain Integration Scale scores (broadband frontal coherence, power ratios, and preparatory brain responses), electrodermal habituation to 85-dB tones, sleepiness, heart rate, respiratory sinus arrhythmia, and P300 latencies in 50 college students. After pretest, students were randomly assigned to learn TM immediately or learn after the 10-week posttest. There were no significant pretest group differences. A MANOVA of students with complete data (N=38) yielded significant group vs treatment interactions for Brain Integration Scale scores, sleepiness, and habituation rates (all pb.007). Post hoc analyses revealed significant increases in Brain Integration Scale scores for Immediate-start students but decreases in Delayed-start students; significant reductions in sleepiness in Immediate-start students with no change in Delayed-start students; and no changes in habituation rates in Immediate-start students, but significant increases in Delayed-start students. These data support the value of TM practice for college students.