Breath deeply. Fill your lungs. Take your attention to your legs and then your toes. Wiggle them gently in your shoes. Note how they feel – sore, tired or really heavy. Congratulations - you have just experienced mindfulness meditation.
We have been aware of the physical benefits of meditation for sometime.
- lowers blood pressure
- lowers the blood lactate (reducing anxiety)
- decreases tension related pain (tension headache, insomnia, muscle and joint problems)
- improves immune system
- increases the energy levels
Now neuroscience has discovered through MRI technology signs and changes in grey matter.
In 2011 a team of Harvard researchers (Psychiatric Neuroimaging Research Program) at the Massachusetts General Hospital completed a study which showed significant changes in brain structure.
The team studied a group of people who were participants in an 8-week mindfulness meditation class. MRI scans were taken two weeks before the class commenced and one week after. The meditators were required to meet once a week and meditate once a day for at least 27 minutes. They were given guided mindfulness meditations on audio. After the course, they were required to fill in a questionnaire.
After studying each persons MRI the researchers reported significant changes in Gray-matter density in the hippocampus which is the learning and memory centre and also in the structure associated (right supramarginal gyrus) with self-awareness, compassion and introspection.
Britta Hölzel a researcher at MGH said 'It's fascinating to see the brains plasticity and by practising meditation, we can play an active role in changing the brain and can increase our well-being and quality of life.'
You can find classes with Saimone in Macksville at 10.00am on Tuesdays or 6.30pm on Wednesdays.
On the third Saturday of every month, you can join Saimone at the Divine Soul Centre in Nambucca Heads.
Saimone also offers Lomi Lomi massages, spiritual health and reiki treatments.
For more just call Saimone on 0408 030 164.