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