The relation between positive affect and negative affect is a predictor of emotional well-being. In addition, healthy neuronal synchronization is associated with higher emotional well-being and positive affect. Related to this, recent studies have consistently reported that Quadrato Motor Training (QMT), a sensorimotor-cognitive training, increases alpha synchronization and emotional well-being in healthy participants. QMT was further found to improve creativity, reflectivity, and mindfulness-related experiences in healthy participants. In the current research, we have examined the effect of QMT on emotional well-being using the Affect Balance Scale (ABS), comparing two 1-week training programs: (1) breathing meditation retreat with QMT training (QMT, n = 42) and (2) breathing meditation retreat without QMT (BM, n = 42). While both groups reported improved affect and self-efficacy following the training, the QMT group reported significantly higher ABS scores following the retreat. QMT can thus improve well-being and emotional regulation as measured by the ABS. The current results strengthen previous claims that different practices, such as BM and QMT, may improve emotional well-being. These results are discussed in the context of the possible mechanisms mediating training-induced improved affect, focusing on the amygdala and neuronal synchronization. In conclusion, incorporating specifically structured motor and mindful practices may serve as important tools to facilitate greater emotional well-being.
Part of the book: The Amygdala
While it has been suggested that diagonal rhythmical bilateral movements promote improvement in motor and cognitive functions, no study that we are aware of has actually examined electrophysiological changes during diagonal movements. Therefore, we aimed to study cerebral activity during the performance of diagonal and vertical movements (DM and VM, respectively), through EEG recording focusing on theta, alpha, and beta frequency bands. Following independent component analysis, we computed time-frequency and source localization analysis. We found that (1) increased frontal theta during the initiation of DM was possibly related to the computational effort; (2) a biphasic pattern of frontoparietal alpha/beta modulations was found during VM; and in addition, (3) source localization showed increased frontal theta during DM generated in the middle frontal cortex. We will discuss the current results and their implications in relation to task difficulty, spatial and temporal computation.
Part of the book: Advances in Neural Signal Processing