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The degree of optical illusion was assessed using standard Muller-Lyer lines in two groups (yoga and control) of thirty subjects each. All subjects were between eighteen and forty two years of age. The difference between the reading at which the lines were actually equal and the reading at which the subject felt them to be equal, was noted as the degree of illusion ("di"). Each subject was assessed at the beginning and end of a month. During the month the yoga group received training in yoga, while the control group carried on with their usual routine. At the end of the month the yoga group showed a significant (two factor ANOVA, Tukey test, P < .001) decrease in the "di" (86%), whereas the control group showed no change. The improvement following yoga could be attributed to the combination of focusing and defocusing involved in yoga practice, as these factors are known to influence the "di". Previous results which mentioned a 79% decrease in "di" with focusing alone, provided a comparison.
The critical flicker fusion frequency (CFF) is the frequency at which a flickering stimulus is perceived to be steady, with higher values suggesting greater perceptual accuracy. The CFF was measured in two age-matched groups of healthy male volunteers whose ages ranged from 25 to 39 years, with 18 subjects in each group. After baseline assessments one group (yoga group) received yoga training, while the other group (control group) carried on with their routine activities. Yoga practices included asanas, pranayamas, kriyas, meditation, devotional sessions and lectures on the theory of yoga. After 10 days neither group showed a change in CFF. However, at 20 and at 30 days the yoga group showed significant increases in CFF by 11.1% and 14.9%, respectively (two factor ANOVA, Tukey multiple comparison test). The control group showed no change at the day 20 and day 30 followup.