Does a Consistent Yoga Practice Change Brain Anatomy?

What’s This Research About?

Does a consistent yoga practice contribute to changing brain anatomy?

This study examines differences in brain anatomy between experienced yoga practitioners and control subjects using structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Researchers also examined which aspects of a weekly yoga practice (postures, breath control and meditation) contributed most to brain size.

About The Author


Brittany Fair

TITLE: Neuroprotective effects of yoga practice: age, experience and frequency dependent plasticity


PUBLICATION: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience

DATE: May 2015

AUTHORS : Chantal Villemure, Marta Čeko, Valerie A. Cotton and M. Catherine Bushnell

Gray Matter (GM): brain tissue that consists of neuron cell bodies and dendrites

Neuroplasticity: the ability of the brain to change its structure and function throughout the lifespan

Neuroprotective: an agent that preserves either neuron structure or function

Structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): a technique that indirectly measures brain anatomy differences

Voxel-Based Morphometry (VBM): an analysis technique that utilizes complex statistics to determine brain volumes

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By |2018-11-28T12:47:17-04:00November 29th, 2018|Meditation, Yoga Methods|1 Comment

About the Author:

M.S. Neuroscience, RYT200, RCYT has a passion for scientific discovery and communicating science. She is a Professor of Anatomy & Physiology at Colby-Sawyer College and has worked as a science communicator for CNN International. She has published in an academic journal with a Nobel Laureate and worked at both UC San Francisco and Stanford University as a researcher. Through these academic and professional experiences, she has gained strong communication skills and a solid background in neuroscience, anatomy, biology and research methodology. Brittany is fascinated with how practicing yoga and meditation can alter human physiology, especially the brain. While teaching yoga, she combines her knowledge and passion of science, movement, and yoga into one cohesive path. She has developed and taught her NeuroFlow workshop around the world, which provides yogis with a basic understanding about how meditation and yoga affect the brain and why meditation and yoga are good for your health and overall wellbeing. Neuroflow is currently being offered as a course this fall at MIT in Boston, MA. For more about Brittany and her NeuroFlow workshop go to:

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