Which quiets the mind more quickly and increases HRV: Toning or mindfulness?

  • Erik Peper San Francisco State University
  • Weston Pollock San Francisco State University
  • Richard Harvey San Francisco State University
  • Aiko Yoshino San Francisco State University
  • Jennifer Daubenmier San Francisco State University
  • Madhu Anziani Firstwasthesound, Richmond, CA
Keywords: Toning, Mindfulness meditation, respiration, intrusive thoughts, mind wandering, heart rate variability, peacefulness, depression, relaxation, Stress management

Abstract

Disruptive thoughts interfere with concentration and performances.  This report compares mindfulness practice (MP) with toning practice (TP) to reduce mind wandering and intrusive thoughts.  Ninety-one undergraduate students (average age 22.4 years) began with either an MP or TP for 3 min.  Respiration, blood volume pulse, and heart rate were monitored for 11 participants.  The participants reported less mind wandering during TP (M = 3.7) than during MP (M = 6.5; p < .001), fewer intrusive thoughts during TP (M = 3.2) than during MP (M = 4.7; p < .001), and more body vibrations during TP (M = 6.2) than during MP (M = 2.3; p < .001) on a scale from 0 (not at all) to 10 (all the time).  For participants with the highest self-reported rating of depression, TP was more effective in reducing mind wandering and intrusive thoughts than the MP (p < .001).  There was no difference in self-reports in peacefulness, warmth, relaxation, anxiety, and depression between TP and MP.  There was a decrease in respiration rate during TP (4.6 br/min) as compared to MP (11.6 br/min; p < .001) and an increase in heart rate variability during TP (SDNN = 103.7 ms; SD = 11.6) as compared to MP (SDNN = 61.9 ms; SD = 6.4).  The findings suggest that TP is a powerful strategy to reduce mind wandering and intrusive thoughts.

Author Biographies

Erik Peper, San Francisco State University
Professor Institute for Holistic Health Studies Department of Health Education
Weston Pollock, San Francisco State University

Student

Richard Harvey, San Francisco State University

Associate Professor

Aiko Yoshino, San Francisco State University

Assistant professor

Jennifer Daubenmier, San Francisco State University

Assistant professor

References

Conder, R. L., & Conder, A. A. (2014). Heart rate variability interventions for concussion and rehabilitation. Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 890. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00890

Creswell, J. D. (2015). Mindfulness Interventions. Annual Review of Psychology, 68, 491–516. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-psych-042716-051139

Dahl, C. J., Lutz, A., & Davidson, R. J. (2015). Reconstructing and deconstructing the self: Cognitive mechanisms in meditation practice. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 19(9), 515–523. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2015.07.001

Ginsberg, J. P., Berry, M. E., & Powell, D. A. (2010). Cardiac coherence and posttraumatic stress disorder in combat veterans. Alternative Therapies, 16(4), 52–60. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/6d27/e5a6084c5d824eca7e50c009413a912f7bf9.pdf?_ga=2.186430496.887517633.1561505930-1100946524.1561505930

Goessl, V. C., Curtiss, J. E., & Hofmann, S. G. (2017). The effect of heart rate variability biofeedback training on stress and anxiety: A meta-analysis. Psychological Medicine, 47(15), 2578–2586. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0033291717001003

Harne, B. P., & Hiwale, A. S. (2018). EEG spectral analysis on OM mantra meditation: A pilot study. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 43(2), 123–129. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10484-018-9391-7

Hofmann, S. G., & Gómez, A. F. (2017). Mindfulness-based interventions for anxiety and depression. Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 40(4), 739–749. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psc.2017.08.008

Kalyani, B. G., Venkatasubramanian, G., Arasappa, R., Rao, N. P., Kalmady, S. V., Behere, R. V., … Gangadhar, B. N. (2011). Neurohemodynamic correlates of 'OM' chanting: A pilot functional magnetic resonance imaging study. International Journal of Yoga, 4(1), 3–6. https://doi.org/10.4103/0973-6131.78171

Khazan, I. Z. (2013). The clinical handbook of biofeedback: A step-by-step guide for training and practice with mindfulness. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: John Wiley & Sons.

Khazan, I. Z. (2019). Biofeedback and Mindfulness in Everyday Life. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company.

Kopelman-Rubin, D., Omer, H., & Dar, R. (2017). Brief therapy for excessive worry: Treatment model, feasibility, and acceptability of a new treatment. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/int0000100

Lagos, L., Thompson, J., & Vaschillo, E. (2013). A preliminary study: Heart rate variability biofeedback for treatment of postconcussion syndrome. Biofeedback, 41(3), 136–143. https://doi.org/10.5298/1081-5937-41.3.02

Lehrer, P. M., & Gevirtz, R. (2014). Heart rate variability biofeedback: How and why does it work? Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 756. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00756

McGrady, A., & Moss, D. (2018). A pathways approach to chronic pain. In A. McGrady & D. Moss, Integrative Pathways (pp. 111–129). Cham, Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-89313-6_6

Ost, L. G. (2008). Efficacy of the third wave of behavioral therapies: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 46(3), 296–321. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brat.2007.12.005

Porges, S. W. (2017). Vagal pathways: Portals to compassion. The Oxford Handbook of Compassion Science, 189–204.

ProComp Infiniti 8-channel system with Biograph Infiniti software (Version 6.1) [Apparatus]. Montreal, Canada: Thought Technology, Ltd.

Renna, M. E., Quintero, J. M., Fresco, D. M., & Mennin, D. S. (2017). Emotion regulation therapy: A mechanism-targeted treatment for disorders of distress. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 98. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00098

Shaffer, F., & Ginsberg, J. P. (2017). An overview of heart rate variability metrics and norms. Frontiers in Public Health, 5, 258. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2017.00258

Smith, J. M., & Alloy, L. B. (2009). A roadmap to rumination: A review of the definition, assessment, and conceptualization of this multifaceted construct. Clinical Psychology Review, 29(2), 116–128. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cpr.2008.10.003

Snow, S., Bernardi, N. F., Sabet-Kassouf, N., Moran, D. & Lehmann, A. (2018). Exploring the Experience and Effects of Vocal Toning. Journal of Music Therapy, 55(2), 221–250. https://doi.org/10.1093/jmt/thy003

Thompson, M., & Thompson, L. (2015). The Neurofeedback Book: An Introduction to Basic Concepts in Applied Psychophysiology. Wheat Ridge, CO: Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback.

van der Zwan, J. E., de Vente, W., Huizink, A. C., Bogels, S. M., & de Bruin, E. I. (2015). Physical activity, mindfulness meditation, or heart rate variability biofeedback for stress reduction: A randomized controlled trial. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 40(4), 257–268. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10484-015-9293-x

Published
2019-09-13
Section
Research Papers