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Effect of 6 Hz theta frequency binaural beats on post-exercise heart rate and blood pressure recovery

Mansi Pandey, Ajay Kumar Saluja, Ruchi Shrivastava, Mitesh Sinha.


Background: Binaural beats are an auditory illusion which causes entrainment of various brain waves in the central nervous system which corresponds to various mind consciousness levels. Six Hz binaural beats have found to be causing entrainment similar to that in relaxation techniques such as meditation. Post-exercise recovery of heart rate is a prognostic indicator of various clinical health. The study investigated the effect of presentation of theta binaural beats on post-exercise recovery of heart rate and blood pressure.

Aims and Objectives: This study aims to compare the effect of 6 Hz theta frequency binaural beats to placebo music on post-exercise blood pressure and heart rate recovery.

Materials and Methods: It is an observational cross-sectional study in which subjects were enrolled for two sessions of maximal exercise till 70% VO2 max which was followed by presentation of either binaural beats or placebo during the relaxation period. Recording of heart rate recovery time (HRT) and heart rate recovery ratio and systolic blood pressure recovery time with systolic blood pressure recovery ratio (SBPR1 and SBPR3) were calculated. All data were analyzed using paired t-test.

Results: Forty subjects participated out of which 25 were male and 15 were female. HRT was significantly decreased in the participants when presented with binaural beats as compared to placebo. No significant difference was seen in blood pressure recovery time. Among the participants, the subjects performing moderate physical activity showed increased fall in heart rate and blood pressure in the 1st and 3rd s measured by the recovery ratio. No significant difference was seen in slight and vigorous physical activity subjects.

Conclusion: Theta binaural beats presented in post-exercise period hasten the heart rate and blood pressure recovery suggestive of entrainment of theta waves which correspond to brain waves similar to that during relaxation techniques such as meditation probably by increasing sympathetic withdrawal and parasympathetic activation.

Key words: Binaural Beats; Heart Rate Recovery; Systolic Blood Pressure Recovery Ratio

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