Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback

, Volume 43, Issue 1, pp 87–92 | Cite as

Cerebrovascular Hemodynamics During the Practice of Bhramari Pranayama, Kapalbhati and Bahir-Kumbhaka: An Exploratory Study

  • L. Nivethitha
  • A. Mooventhan
  • N. K. Manjunath
  • Lokesh Bathala
  • Vijay K. Sharma


Various pranayama techniques are known to produce different physiological effects. We evaluated the effect of three-different pranayama techniques on cerebrovascular hemodynamics. Eighteen healthy volunteers with the mean ± standard deviation age of 23.78 ± 2.96 years were performed three-different pranayama techniques: (1) Bhramari, (2) Kapalbhati and (3) Bahir-Kumbhaka in three-different orders. Continuous transcranial Doppler (TCD) monitoring was performed before, during and after the pranayama techniques. TCD parameters such as peak systolic velocity, end diastolic velocity (EDV), mean flow velocity (MFV) and pulsatility index (PI) of right middle cerebral artery were recorded. Practice of Kapalbhati showed significant reductions in EDV and MFV with significant increase in PI while, Bahir-Kumbhaka showed significant increase in EDV and MFV with significant reduction in PI. However, no such significant changes were observed in Bhramari pranayama. Various types of pranayama techniques produce different cerebrovascular hemodynamic changes in healthy volunteers.


Brain blood flow Breath control Fast breathing Pranayama Slow breathing Yoga 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

Study protocol was approved by the institutional ethics committee, S-VYASA University, Bengaluru, India.

Informed Consent

A written informed consent was obtained from each participant.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Nivethitha
    • 1
  • A. Mooventhan
    • 1
  • N. K. Manjunath
    • 1
  • Lokesh Bathala
    • 2
  • Vijay K. Sharma
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Yoga and Life Sciences, Department of Research and DevelopmentS-VYASA UniversityBengaluruIndia
  2. 2.Department of NeurologyAster CMI Hospital, Cauvery Medical CentreBengaluruIndia
  3. 3.Division of NeurologyNational University HospitalSingaporeSingapore

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