Effect of Yoga Nidra on Hypertension

Research shows that yoga nidra is a safe, effective alternative or adjunct in the management of hypertension. Numerous trials have observed the influence of yoga nidra, and other relaxation practices derived from yoga nidra, in lowering the blood pressure, and their results have appeared in medical journals  worldwide.  All  have  shown  significant  responses, and  today  there  is  absolutely  no  doubt  in  scientific  circles that yoga nidra effectively reduces tension and lowers blood pressure. It is only a matter of time before increasing tension levels,  coupled  with  greater  economic  hardship  in  world communities, leads many more physicians to investigate and validate the practice of yoga nidra both for themselves and their hypertensive patients.

The research has been done. It is there for all to see and validate. The  forthcoming  introduction  of  yoga  nidra  into the  standard  medical  treatment  regime  for  hypertension in  the  next  few  years  heralds  one  of  the  most  significant revolutionary  changes  in  medical  therapeutics.  It  is  beginning to occur now and it will continue. After its benefits in hypertension  have  been  proved  by  more  doctors,  the  rest  will be plain sailing, because the benefits of yoga nidra and relaxation,  as  well  as  the  other  techniques  of  yoga,  will  be self-revealing and ongoing.

Let  me  tell  you  about  just  one  of  the  many  important  studies  on  the  effects  yoga  nidra.  It  was  conducted  at  the Department  of  Cardiology  at  Bombay  Hospital  by  one  of  India’s  most  eminent  cardiologists,  Brigadier  K.K.  Datey, and first appeared in the journal Angiology in 1976.

He trained 86 hypertensive men and women, average age 40  years,  in  yogic  relaxation,  in shavasana, the corpse  pose. Their  average  blood  pressure  was  186/115  mm.Hg.  The  patients  were  divided  into  3  groups.

Group  1  contained  patients  who  had  not  received  any  anti-hypertensive  drug  beforehand.

Group  2  consisted  of  patients  who  had  been  taking  anti-hypertensive  drugs  for  at  least  two  years,  with  adequate control of blood pressure.

Group 3 were patients whose  blood  pressure  remained  inadequately  controlled  in  spite  of  taking  anti-hypertensive  drugs.

All  patients  were  thoroughly trained in yogic relaxation at the cardiac clinic, and asked to continue to practice shavasana once or twice a day at home.

After  three  months,  their  clinical  condition  and  blood  pressure were reassessed. Significant results were recorded in all three groups. The majority of patients reported a general feeling of well being, with marked improvement in symptoms like  headache,  insomnia  and  nervousness.

In  Group  1,  average blood pressure dropped from 134 to 107 mm.Hg., a  fall  of  27  mm.Hg.

In  Group  2,  average  blood  pressure fell from 102 to 100 mm.Hg., but drug requirements were simultaneously reduced to 32% of the original dosage in 60% of  patients.

In  Group  3,  average  blood  pressure  dropped  from  120  mm.Hg.  to  110  mm.Hg.,  while  drug  intake  was  simultaneously reduced to 29% of original levels in 38% of patients.

Furthermore,  patients  who  failed  to  respond  were generally those who were irregular in attendance and daily practice.  These  results  are  highly  significant,  and  we  can  conclude that yoga nidra may well be the long sought after solution  to  the  problem  of  hypertension.  It  clearly  has  value  either  in  place  of  conventional  drug  therapies  or  in  conjunction with them.

Several other studies have produced comparable results. A study conducted at Stanford University School of Medicine, California,  used  29  essential  hypertensives  who  had  been  receiving medications for at least six months previously. They were divided into three groups. Group 1 received relaxation training  directly  from  an  instructor  for  ten  weeks.  Group  2  practiced  relaxation  training  at  home  with  the  aid  of  an audio-cassette recording. Group 3 underwent psychotherapy without  yogic  relaxation  training.  At  the  six-month  follow-up,  the  instructor-conducted  relaxation  group 1  fared  best  of  all, revealing an average decrease of 7.8 mm.Hg. in systolic blood pressure and 9.7 mm.Hg. in diastolic blood pressure.

By Swami Satyananda Saraswati

Extracted from Yoga and Cardiovascular Management

(Yoga Publications Trust)

Please note

* We are conducting Yoga workshop on “Yogic Management of Hypertension & High Blood Pressure”. Details are as below:-

Date – 8th March 2020, Sunday

Venue – 433 / 10, Saraswat Colony, Behind Old Zilla Parishad, Somwar Peth, Pune – 411 001

Time – 7.00 am to 11.00 am

Please contact – 9623600316,  9881000443

*We shall provide tea & breakfast


This Post Has One Comment

  1. Chhaya

    Thanks for sharing useful piece of information

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