Resources & Reviews

Meditation May Reduce Pain

Posted in News, Resources & Reviews on March 21st, 2013 by Vlad – Be the first to comment

Meditation is well known for it’s effects on the mind and emotions. Scientists are now finding that it has profound effects on the nurvous system and in this particular study on how we perceive pain.

By 
WebMD Health News

April 6, 2011 — Even very brief instruction in meditation appears to help people cope with pain, and a newly published brain imaging study may explain why.

After just four, 20-minute instructional sessions in mindfulness meditation, most participants in the small study experienced big reductions in pain intensity and unpleasantness when subjected to painful stimuli.

Prior to learning the meditation technique, brain imaging showed significant activity in a key area of the brain when the participants were subjected to intense heat, but this activity was reduced when they were meditating.

“This is the first study to show that only a little over an hour of meditation training can dramatically reduce both the experience of pain and pain-related brain activation,” said researcher Fadel Zeidan, PhD, who is a postdoctoral fellow at Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

To read the rest of the article click here.

Mindful Ripples: Mindfulness in Public Education

Posted in Interviews, News, Resources & Reviews on January 3rd, 2012 by Vlad – Be the first to comment

Vlad Moskovski interview with Megan Cowan, co-found and executive director of programs at Mindful Schools.

Imagine a classroom in a public inner- city elementary school. Perhaps images of loud screaming kids comes to mind. Nope, this is not the classroom we are talking about. In this mindfulness classroom the kids are quiet and contemplative. They are learning to noticing their feelings and observe their thoughts. This is happening in every classroom, spreading like wildfire across many schools, with teachers and staff learning along side the kids. Welcome to the world of Mindful Schools. A non-profit that is integrating mindfulness into education.

Vlad: How did Mindful Schools start, and what was your involvement?

In 2007, at the first Mindfulness in Education Conferences I met Laurie Grossman and Richard Shaknman who had just started a pilot program teaching mindfulness at Emerson Elementary School in Oakland. My whole background is in mindfulness meditation and kids and I have been teaching kids mindfulness in a variety of context for a while and was looking to get more into the public arena. So I went and saw Richard teach at that first school and I think the three of us knew right away, “Oh yeah, a perfect fit”. At the time teaching mindfulness in schools was new and for us it was just an experiment, but it was very evident that the impact was powerful. I taught the second school that we piloted and things just flowed from there. My involvement was from the beginning, but it evolved from us doing a program to us really starting to learn something that was going to become an organization. Since then, there has been a strong surge in the field. In a way, we caught the wave.

Vlad: What inspires you to continue going into schools?

The classroom is why I do this work. If I haven’t been in the classroom in a while then I start to get depressed. I feel like I get more from the kids then they get from me. For me it is such an honor and such a gift to be able to work with them. We work primarily with elementary schools, and I think that age group feels very healing to me. I get a tremendous amount of joy from being able to connect with them, and teach them a skill that I find valuable and see them embrace it and take in on in a way that is improving the way they relate to their life. There is a magic of seeing how they apply mindfulness on their own.

Vlad: Is there an underlying assumption underneath the work that Mindful Schools does – an ideology?

I think it is a fundamental assumption that self awareness does improve the quality of your life. I guess we could say it all comes down to a preventative mental health tool that gives young people the capacity to notice and navigate their experiences and emotions. If you teach that to them while they are young, you are giving them a much stronger foundation from which to approach challenges and difficulties and recognize and appreciate the things that are good and going well in life.

Part of what happens when you are self aware is that you don’t take yourself or your thoughts as personally or as seriously so you can rebound more quickly from being depressed or being caught in an obsessive thought pattern. You can catch it sooner, and you can see it more objectively, and are much more empowered to make choice around those thoughts and emotions.

Vlad: How do you imagine mindfulness will help and change this generation of kids?

I don’t feel like I am operating in this work with an idealized vision of how we are going to change the world. If we are building one interactions to the next then I feel like we are connecting with kids. We are embowering them, giving them a tools that help them navigate through life maybe in a way they did not have before. There is this ripple effect in how they relate to their classmates, their teacher, their families, and the challenges in their life and the decisions that they make. When you follow it out step by step, I guess theoretically we could be looking at a more peaceful world. But you know, it is a big world and there are a lot of people and it is a big jump.

Vlad: How is mindfulness being regarded in the public school system? Do teachers, staff, and principals get it?

We have been, as of this Fall, in just over 50 schools and work with about 14,000 kids all in the Bay Area. I think that I have encountered every single reaction, from incredibly supporting and engaged in the work to not interested or even objecting to the work, but the large majority are really interested and responsive. My general sense is that there is something intuitive that people recognize about the potential benefits of teaching kids mindfulness.

Living in our culture that is moving full speed ahead constantly, people don’t allow themselves any down time to stop and deliberately let their body become still and bring awareness into their physical experience to start to notice the content of their mind. There is a relief in that, just the stopping. We teach the program to the kids and the teachers. And then, over the course of the two months, or however long we are at a school we are preparing the kids to take ownership over leading mindfulness in the classroom.

Vlad: I’ve been seeing a lot of articles about meditation and the brain. Is mindfulness gaining popularity-recognition?

It is hard to say when you are in it, I think it is everywhere! Every time I’m at a staff meeting in a school I ask, “Raise your had if you’ve never heard of mindfulness and usually plenty of hands go up”. You look in any arena, mindfulness based things are popping up everywhere. Most notably in medicine and psychology.

Vlad: Is mindfulness a set of skills or can it also be part of a spiritual path? In other words, what is the relationship between learning mindfulness and spirituality?

I think that ultimately mindfulness still holds a place in both of those worlds. That mindfulness is used as a spiritual practice in deepening ones own understanding and wisdom in a spiritual context, and it will continue to be utilized as a life skills or a mental health tool. When you pull it apart, mindfulness is a universal human capacity to pay attention. It just so happens that certain contemplative traditions have utilized that capacity with spiritual means. And it is found most obviously in Buddhism, but looking at oneself in a contemplative way is found within all contemplative traditions. I think we are really fortunate that it got such a methodical laid out structure in Buddhism. That is what makes it really accessible.

Vlad: Do you think anything is lost in taking it out of the Buddhist or spiritual context?

I think it depends on what your intention is. I think there is this concern that Buddhists are co-opting education, they are trying to sneak in the back door or something. For Mindful Schools, our intention is to give kids tools that help them navigate their world more easily and that is really sincere. And in that way, I absolute do not think anything is lost. You don’t need a religious context for that at all.

And then I can say for people, for myself, that learning mindfulness when I was young as a life skills would not have been enough for me. I wanted something more out of it and I like that there is a place to pursue that.

For more info and to get involved check out: http://mindfulschools.org/

Trust, Abundance, and Community at Karma Kitchen

Posted in Interviews, Resources & Reviews on August 16th, 2011 by Vlad – Be the first to comment

An Interview with Richard Whittaker conducted by Vlad Moskovski

The world is full of restaurants where people come to sit, to enjoy each other’s company, and of course to eat. Karma Kitchen is a little different. As one of the more public projects of Charity Focus, Karma Kitchen is a restaurant that offers individuals the possibility to be a server one day, and a guest the next. In this radical place, there is more laughing, more cheer, and more spontaneity than in most restaurants. Here one can come alone and leave feeling a part of a big family and an even bigger ideal – to live a life based on the generosity and service to others.

 

Vlad: How did Karma Kitchen begin and what is the basic premise behind it?

Karma Kitchen is an experiment in generosity. On the outside it looks like a regular restaurant, but the atmosphere is different; it’s friendlier, there is more human connection in the air and it leads to an elevated and festive atmosphere. It’s really quite wonderful and no two Sundays are the same. Each week the staff people are all volunteers except the cooks who work for the restaurant and get compensated.

Part of the idea is that this is a special experience for the volunteers. As a volunteer, you are serving the food, but you really want to have the feeling that you are connecting with people. In this attentive openness towards a customer, you might learn that someone has just come to town, or they are on their way somewhere. Maybe someone wants to sing a song, or an anniversary has just happened. There’s any number of things that can be revealed, and if something has been discovered about one of the guests that might be shared with the whole restaurant, the waiter might check with the guest and alert the maitre d’. So there’s this additional dimension where all those who are volunteering are alert to hidden possibilities.

Of course, for the volunteer, there’s also the experience of just trying to meet the basic demands of being a good waiter or dishwasher. It just so happens that at the restaurant [Taste of Himalayas], which is where Karma Kitchen is now, there’s a fellow named Juan who is the most extraordinary dishwasher. One time, as a volunteer, I was assigned that task. I was muddling along as best I could wrestling the dirty dishes, spraying them, and loading them into this commercial machine. There were two of us and sometimes we would fall behind. Then Juan would sweep in. We’d have to get out of his way because Juan is known as “The Hurricane.” Seemingly throwing dishes in every direction and making a big racket, but never breaking anything, he’d just completely take care of the whole mess. In the time that it would take me, or any ordinary person, to do 3 or 4 dishes, he’s done 50. It was really amazing.

Watching Juan showed me how much we miss in this culture by overlooking the maestros that exist in every field of endeavor. We celebrate the maestro who is the conductor of the orchestra, but no one like Juan gets celebrated. I watched Juan wash dishes. I actually watched very carefully, and I saw that he had mastered something to such a degree that it deserved my real feeling of respect and honor. So Karma Kitchen is a place in which one has all kinds of fresh impressions, like my impression of Juan. I think it’s because the basic premise is novel and unexpected. It’s really an exploration of what happens when you actually try to act from generosity and service.

Vlad: Why do you think it’s so popular? There is always a line out the door.

Well, you go there and it’s really fun. It’s really rewarding. I’ve met people and had some astonishing experiences as a guest. For instance, I met this woman, Susan Schaller, and heard her story—which is truly amazing. I could not believe I was sitting across from a person with a story that is the equivalent of the Helen Keller story. That’s my most dramatic experience in meeting someone new there. But people love it because it’s really enlivening.

 

Vlad: So everything is run by volunteers, what do you think motivates people to volunteer their time on a Sunday afternoon to work in a restaurant serving food and washing dishes?

If your wife has been trying to get you to wash dishes for years, and you’ve been resisting that and now you’re volunteering to wash dishes, that’s strange, isn’t it? [laughs] It seems that people are drawn to the possibility of giving something instead of just concentrating to getting something. And those who already have experienced that shift from “myself and what I want” to a focus on giving and sharing with others know the special feeling that can happen. The thing about Karma Kitchen is that it’s like a little laboratory where people are experimenting and trying to put something new into action. I think that’s what draws people. There may be a few people who just go there to get a meal because they don’t have any money and that’s ok, too, because often they end up coming back to volunteer and serve as well.

 

Vlad: Is the idea of a pay it forward restaurant spreading? I hear about other locations?

Karma Kitchen has been giving rise to some copies of itself. I think there is one in DC, in Chicago, and another one or two in the process of being born. Charity Focus projects have had a tendency to spread. Karma Kitchen is one of them, and there are several others. I think there’s a widespread interest in service and a feeling among a lot of young people that there has to be a different model from the selfish, capitalistic attitude of “I’m going to get mine and the hell with you.” Many people feel very deeply that something has to change, and that this change has to be in the direction of some kind of service to a greater good.

Charity Focus projects are like pure versions of this. They’re pretty radical about that, about carrying out their experiments without any focus on the bottom line—without counting the pennies. The interest is in a kind of selfless service. In something that is truly generous.

 

Vlad: So, they don’t worry about the bottom line?

The truth is that there has to be a certain amount of income or such projects would not keep working. It’s not as though money is ignored. But it’s not worried about—and Karma Kitchen has been more than supporting itself. It almost seems as if there’s a law, that if something is given with certain kind of purity—if something is truly generous—it always causes a reaction of gratitude. And when you feel grateful, the impulse is to give back. So the bottom line takes care of itself.

With Karma Kitchen, there’s not going to be a big worry. If in fact, people were not paying it forward, they would just close it. I don’t think there’s a big commitment to, “We’ve got to keep this going.” Instead, the attitude is “Let’s try this and see if it works. Let’s see what happens.” In Charity Focus’ philosophy, there is a willingness to fail.

 

Vlad: I ask the question about the bottom line, because I see this transition happening from a more capitalist model, at least around here in the Bay Area, to being more gift economy, and of course it brings up concerns in those that don’t have complete faith in generosity or in this law that you speak of.   

I think you have to verify it. If someone gives something to me, and if it’s a real act of generosity, I know how I feel. I know my impulse and response is that of gratitude and the wish to give back and reciprocate. Karma Kitchen is verifiably functioning. The money comes in—although it may fail in the future. The core people in Charity Focus, while they are very upbeat and full of hopefulness, have not abandoned their critical judgment. They are all very bright people, who look very carefully at things. They are going to be realistic, but they’re also capable of making these unusual leaps and trying things out. It’s how things can actually be tested rather than just thought about.

 

Vlad: For me, it really comes down to having faith in something that is very pure, Charity Focus is very pure around their intentions.

It would seem to me that purity is an ideal. In moments one might experience a pure impulse, and the next moment one may say, “Oh, I see how I could benefit from that, and I want to benefit from that.” There are moments when something actually pure might act through one, but to think that one can be pure—I would be extremely suspicious of that. For a lot of Charity Focus people, Gandhi is a great exemplar. There is a saying of Gandhi’s that, “if you wait until you are pure before you begin to serve, you will never begin to serve.” You have to start wherever you are and then maybe by following the path of service, you will move in the direction of more purity.

For more info visit:
KarmaKitchen (US), CharityFocus (incubator), DailyGood (news), Karma Tube (videos), HelpOthers (kind acts), Conversations (artists), iJourney (wisdom), MovedByLove (India), CFSites (technical)

 

Mindfulness Meditation and Yoga in Public Schools – Part 1

Posted in News, Resources & Reviews on May 16th, 2010 by Vlad – Be the first to comment

As I look around me at a classroom of over 20 eager and curious 6th graders sitting on pillows in a carpeted room with colorful paintings, famous quotes, and a picture of social change leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr, I can’t help but think how far we have come.

At this West Oakland School, every youth is taught mindfulness meditation, yoga, and mindful listening. This under-funded inner city school is taking a radical step towards preventing further violence in it’s community by teaching  students to seek more peaceful and harmonious ways to live.  Growing Up Mindful, is a program designed to teach students mindfulness, open and honest communication, yoga, and other consciousness raising activities. Knowing that this class is now integrated into the school curriculum with the approval and encouragement of the staff and principal is a dream come true.

This program is no singularity, similar programs are sprouting in many elementary, middle, and high schools all over the country. Yoga and Mindfulness are also being taken into jails, juvenile halls, and hospitals. With so much research to back up the claims that Mindfulness meditation and yoga improve concentration, memory, attention, reduce stress, and improve overall health, its no wonder that these ancient practices are finally making their way to public schools.

In addition to the benefits already mentioned, in a school setting students experience a radical boost to their self esteem and improved self image and confidence. By practicing yoga students are able to gain confidence in their own abilities to overcome physically and mentally challenging poses with a peaceful mind. The curriculum also focuses on establish mutual respect, kindness, and understanding- crucial to students facing inner city violence and oppression in their own communities.

Best book on Taoism: The Tao Te Ching by Stephen Mitchell

Posted in Musings, Resources & Reviews on October 30th, 2009 by Vlad – Be the first to comment

tao te chingThere are two books that I treasure above all others in my life. I have already written about the first, it is the Ptanjali Yoga Sutras by Swami Satchidananda, this book is the second.

I have flipped through many different versions and translations of the Tao Te Ching, but this one always strikes me as the best and clearest of them all. The author has had years of experience as a Zen practitioner and meditator. I believe that this background and experience has helped him understand the deeper meaning behind the paradoxical language found in the Toa Te Ching. Stephen Mitchell himself says, “I have often been fairly literal – as as literal as one ca be with such a subtle, kaleidoscopic book… If I haven’t always translated Lao Tzu’s words, my intention has always been to translate his mind.”

I have had this little book for many years and it never ceases to amaze me just how much insight and perspective I can gain from re-reading just a few passages. Sometimes, I just open it at random to a page and read it, like a horoscope for that day. Other times, I search greedily for the passage that moves me and re-read it over and over again until it is burned into my memory. Like a soft whisper in my mind, the lines come back to me when I most need them to remind me to stay present and embody the Tao in my life.

chinese manThe word “kaleidoscopic” seems very fitting for such a book because there are are hundreds of lessons or paths that you can take to understanding. There are 81 stanzas in total, and yet there is mainly one bold and central idea that underlies all passages. Lao Tzu wants to make sure that the reader really gets it. Even though he then laughs at the idea because it is not a matter of “getting it” but rather using it.

To quote another passage, “The Tao is like a bellows: it is empty yet infinitely capable. The more you use it, the more it produces; the more you talk of it, the less you understand.”

I frequently think of this book as a spiritual instruction manual. Its not philosophy, its not psychology, rather, its like an Ikea manual for assembling a lamp or table. Of course the Ikea manual will give only enough instructions on how to assemble the object, while the Tao Te Ching gives 81 instructions – often referencing “The Master” or one who is in alignment with the Tao. Thus, this is a unique spiritual book unlike any other simply because it was written to confuse the intellectual mind. A rational and reasonable person will find this book frustrating, certainly illogical, and quite possibly even useless. It is a brilliant way to filter readers and pass down wisdom without having the original message garbled up. This book is a gem of wisdom, its no wonder that it has survived all this time and continues to inspire new generations of readers. A few final words from master Lao Tzu.

“In the pursuit of knowledge, every day something is added.

In the practice of the Tao, every day something is dropped.

Less and less do you need to force things, untill finally you arrive at non-action.

When nothing is done, nothing is left undone.


True mastery can be gained by letting things go their own way.

It can’t be gained by interfering.” (Stanza 48).

The Ojai Yoga Crib – A Yoga Retreat Like No Other

Posted in News, Resources & Reviews, Yoga on October 28th, 2009 by Vlad – Be the first to comment
The teacher’s voice is like a soft whispering hum filling the room, it tickles the skin and nourishes just the right place within. To be in the presence of such a brilliant, loving, and soulful teacher is a rare opportunity. As we move from pose to pose, sweat dripping from our faces, there is an internal smile that awakens with gratitude and joy at the awesomeness of such a class. This is no regular yoga class, here, we are a community, we are loved, and we feel at home. We are at the Ojai Yoga Crib.
Having been to many festivals, workshops, and gatherings, few events feel so deliciously good, so inspiring, and refreshing. Maybe it is because the crib takes place in the small town town of Ojai, nestled into a beautiful and lush valley just one and a half hours north of the busy concrete jungle of Los Angeles. Perhaps it is the amazing venues where classes are held. A class in the geodesic dome reveals the stunning acoustical properties of its geometric shape, where the musical voice of the teacher’s singing arcs and leaps with a whispers right into your ear. We pack into a school bus, bringing back memories of school days, and with giddy excitement we head for the stunning meditation center. Up there, as I move from downward dog into cobra, my gaze travels far ahead looking at the distant mountains surrounding us and the lush oaks covering the hills like millions of broccoli heads. Ojai is infused with the energy of spiritual wisdom and radiant beauty, it is where the famous spiritual leader Krishnamurti settled down and spent much of his time.
The crib is hosted by Lulubandhas – a yoga studio in Ojai. It is the brainchild of Kira and Eric Ryder and is made possible by the joint effort of a loving community of yogis. From the moment one arrives at headquarters, there is a sense of joy and togetherness that is unlike anything else I have experienced. Everything detail has been thought through to make this three day yoga retreat exciting and accessible. Starting from the butterfly engraved outfits of the friendly team of volunteers to the simple and colorful schedule, every detail is an expression of the care and love that went into this event. Participants are able to choose from some of the best and most diverse teachers, each one bringing a unique perspective, years of experience, and a deep reverence for the science and art of yoga. The biggest challenge for me was to choose between the teachers for the five classes that are offered. Two classes the first and second day, one class on the last.
Meditation is held every morning and at 9 am, the first two and a half hour class begins. A vegetarian lunch is offered at headquarters or participants can choose from any of the wonderful restaurants around town. After lunch, allowing for some time for digestion, contemplation, and a mid-afternoon nap, the second two and a half hour class begins. In the evenings, inspirational dharma talks, kirtan, music, and dancing provide entertainment and bring all the yogis together for a celebration of the spirit, mind, and heart.
As hard as it was to leave the crib, I am left with a deep sense of fulfillment and love. Rejuvenated and re-inspired, I already can’t wait for next year to come soon enough. Thank you Eric, Kira, Lulubanhdas, and everyone that helped make this such a masterful and blissful event.

ojai yoga crib 01The teacher’s voice is like a soft whispering hum filling the room, it tickles the skin and nourishes just the right place within. To be in the presence of such a brilliant, loving, and soulful teacher is a rare opportunity. As we move from pose to pose, sweat dripping from our faces, there is an internal smile that awakens with gratitude and joy at the awesomeness of such a class. This is no regular yoga class, here, we are a community, we are loved, and we feel at home. We are at the Ojai Yoga Crib.

Having been to many festivals, workshops, and gatherings, few events feel so deliciously good, so inspiring, and refreshing. Maybe it is because the crib takes place in the small town town of Ojai, nestled into a beautiful and lush valley just one and a half hours north of the busy concrete jungle of Los Angeles. Perhaps it is the amazing venues where classes are held. A class in the geodesic dome reveals the stunning acoustical properties of its geometric shape, where the musical voice of the teacher’s singing arcs and leaps with a whispers right into your ear. We pack into a school bus, bringing back memories of school days, and with giddy excitement we head for the stunning meditation center. Up there, as I move from downward dog into cobra, my gaze travels far ahead looking at the distant mountains surrounding us and the lush oaks covering the hills like millions of broccoli heads. Ojai is infused with the energy of spiritual wisdom and radiant beauty, it is where the famous spiritual leader Krishnamurti settled down and spent much of his time.

The crib is hosted by Lulubandhas – a yoga studio in Ojai. It is the brainchild of Kira and Eric Ryder and is madeojai yoga crib 03 possible by the joint effort of a loving community of yogis. From the moment one arrives at headquarters, there is a sense of joy and togetherness that is unlike anything else I have experienced. Every detail has been thought through to make this three day yoga retreat exciting and accessible. Starting from the butterfly engraved outfits of the friendly team of volunteers to the simple and colorful schedule, every detail is an expression of the care and love that went into this event. Participants are able to choose from some of the best and most diverse teachers, each one bringing a unique perspective, years of experience, and a deep reverence for the science and art of yoga. The biggest challenge for me was to choose between the teachers for the five classes that are offered. Two classes the first and second day, one class on the last.

Meditation is held every morning. At 9 am, the first two and a half hour class begins. Afterwards, a vegetarian lunch is offered at headquarters or participants can choose from any of the wonderful restaurants around town. After lunch, allowing for some time for digestion, contemplation, and possibly a mid-afternoon nap, the second two and a half hour class begins. In the evenings, inspirational dharma talks, kirtan, music, and dancing provide entertainment and bring all the yogis together for a celebration of the spirit, mind, and heart.

As hard as it was to leave the crib, I am left with a deep sense of fulfillment and love. Rejuvenated and re-inspired, I already can’t wait for next year to come soon enough. Thank you Eric, Kira, Lulubanhdas, and everyone that helped make this such a masterful and blissful event.

The Ojai Yoga Crib Website
Lulubandhas Website

Improve Your Brain & Memory Through Super Brain Yoga

Posted in News, Resources & Reviews, Stress Management, Techniques on October 26th, 2009 by Vlad – Be the first to comment
Here is something new. A rather interesting technique that people are calling super brain yoga.
The exercise in itself is very simple and involves the use of breath retention combined with crossing the left and right arm. This is very similar to the eagle pose in yoga where the left arm is crossed over right as right leg is crossed over left. The idea is to mismatch and break the natural synchronized patterning of body motion in order to create new patterns and awareness. Using breathing and an up and down motion also help retrain the brain and makes the movement more memorable. The video below mentions that the effectiveness of the technique is due in part to the placement of the fingers on the earl lobes that are related to acupressure points.
Supposedly, doing this exercise 15 times daily in the morning makes children and adults smarter by synchronizing the two brain hemispheres. I wanted to bring this technique to your attention with the hopes that some of my readers will try it out and comment back on this post what they thought of it. I will try this technique out for the next two week doing 15 repetitions every morning and will send out an update on effects and self observations.
Here is the short video about it and a link to the specific instruction on how to do it. As the video points out, this is especially powerful for kids with learning or emotional disabilities.

my brainHere is something new. A rather interesting technique that people are calling super brain yoga.

The exercise in itself is very simple and involves the use of breath retention combined with crossing the left and right arm. This is very similar to the eagle pose in yoga where the left arm is crossed over right as right leg is crossed over left. The idea is to mismatch and break the natural synchronized patterning of body motion in order to create new patterns and awareness. Using breathing and an up and down motion also help retrain the brain and makes the movement more memorable. The video below mentions that the effectiveness of the technique is due in part to the placement of the fingers on the earl lobes that are related to acupressure points.

Supposedly, doing this exercise 15 times daily in the morning makes children and adults smarter by synchronizing the two brain hemispheres. I wanted to bring this technique to your attention with the hopes that some of my readers will try it out and comment back on this post what they thought of it. I will try this technique out for the next two week doing 15 repetitions every morning and will send out an update on the effects based on my own self observations.

Here is the short video from CBS2 News about it and a link to the specific instruction on how to do it. As the video points out, this is especially powerful for kids with learning or emotional disabilities.

Video, Instructions.