Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Summary of Findings: Yoga (3 out of 5 Stars)

Note: This post represents the synthesis of the thoughts, procedures and experiences of others as represented in the articles read in advance (see previous posts) and the discussion among the students and instructor during the Advanced Analytic Techniques class at Mercyhurst University in October 2017 regarding Yoga as an Analytic Modifier specifically. This technique was evaluated based on its overall validity, simplicity, flexibility and its ability to effectively use unstructured data.

Yoga is a philosophy and physical exercise that aims to cultivate mind-body awareness and higher states of consciousness. For analytic technique purposes, it can be used as a modifier. Using breathing, meditation, and modified body posturing, yoga may help strengthen the body while relaxing and focusing the mind. Yoga helps promote blood flow to the brain to promote a feeling of wellbeing, to reduce stress.  
  • Allows the body to repair muscles, ligaments, and tissues
  • Better cognitive performance
  • Improves executive function task performance and mood
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • The mind becomes distracted and helps the person relax
  • Keeps you alert, able to focus, and less irritable
  • If you can convince your team to make the change it is a small, low cost, easy step to increase productivity
  • Could be cost-effective for a company
  • Decreases risk for health conditions

  • Requires a physical and mental buy-in regarding concepts
  • Takes a serious time commitment to be fully effective- 60 minutes, 3-4 times a week to see the benefits
  • Not everyone is physically capable of practicing yoga
  • Doing the same routine limits your ability to grow and gain flexibility  
  • Other physical activities could be easier for people to commit to a busy schedule.
  • Many of its postures are athletic, requiring twisting and bending; if not done properly, injury can occur
  1. Set aside 30 to 60 minutes two to three times per week
  2. Find a clean, open space to perform the yoga
  3. Breath deeply. In through nose and out through mouth
  4. Move through various postures from a chosen style of Yoga
  5. Concentrate on deep breathing during postures
  6. Change poses, focusing on the breathing
  7. End the yoga with shavasana to feel energized

Application of Technique: The class took an online memory test before participating in a 10 minute yoga exercise using basic yoga postures. After the exercise, the class took a different memory test to assess the differences in cognitive function. Following the second test, the class discussed the pros and cons of yoga compared to other forms of exercise, including, the “flow” state of mind that physical and mental activities can cause.

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