Inner Engineering in-person programs offer the live transmission of Shambhavi Mahamudra Kriya, an ancient kriya with millions of dedicated practitioners worldwide. Scientific studies have measured the benefits of practicing the kriya regularly, on the levels of brain activity, sleep patterns, psychological health and physical wellbeing.


Inner Engineering practitioners reported 31% lower stress scores than the general population.

Citation: Front. Public Health 2022

A study consisting of 6,892 participants during the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated that Inner Engineering practitioners had lower median stress levels compared to non-meditating controls (low stress vs. medium stress). Additionally, Inner Engineering practitioners had lower anxiety and depression along with higher scores for joy and wellbeing (1). For those who do a daily practice, Inner Engineering has shown to reduce stress by 54% after 8 weeks of practice (2) and has been linked to improved wellbeing and positive work outcomes (3, 4).

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Amongst working professionals, compliant participants reported a 54% reduction in stress levels after 8 weeks of practice.

Citation: Evid. Based Complementary Altern. Med. 2022


Anxiety levels reduced 36% after 6 weeks of Isha Kriya practice.

The practices included with the Inner Engineering program have shown to have significant benefits. Four weeks of Upa Yoga practice has been linked with reduced stress, anxiety, and depression along with improvements in wellbeing (5).

Another practice included with the Inner Engineering Online program is a 15 minute meditation called Isha Kriya. This practice decreased total mood disturbances and negative emotions after one sitting (6). Furthermore, six weeks of Isha Kriya practice resulted in a 36% reduction in self-reported anxiety, including a 48% decrease in those experiencing severe anxiety (7). The eect was stronger for those with depression as six weeks of practice resulted in a 46% reduction including a 50% reduction for those who were initially considered depressed. After six weeks of practice, a majority of those who initially reported depression were no longer considered depressed (7).

Citation: Front. Psychiatry 2022


Depression levels reduced 46% after 6 weeks of Isha Kriya practice.

Citation: Front. Psychiatry 2022


Participants reported a 41% reduction in stress after 6 weeks of practicing Shambhavi Mahamudra Kriya.

After completing the Inner Engineering Online program, one can learn the primary practice associated with the Inner Engineering program – Shambhavi Mahamudra Kriya (Shambhavi Kriya). Those practicing Shambhavi Kriya showed significant improvements in both psychological and physiological measures. Daily practice of Shambhavi Kriya has been linked to decreased stress and increased wellbeing (8, 9). After six weeks of practice, stress levels and negative emotions were reduced 41% and 50%, respectively (9). Additional improvements were also observed in relationships, meaning, health, mindfulness, and sleep quality (9).

Citation: Front. Psychol. 2022


Meditator autonomic nervous system

In addition to improvements in psychological metrics, regular practice of Shambhavi Kriya has significant physiological benefits. Inner Engineering practitioners demonstrated greater heart rate variability (HRV) (10), a potentially important indicator of resilience to stress and overall wellbeing (11). High frequency power, a measure of the parasympathetic, or restful, response was 4.8 times greater in meditators (10).

Meditators had a 4.8 times greater parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) response compared to controls. The PNS is a network of nerves that relaxes your system.

Citation: J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2012


Brain wave patterns

Another study based on electroencephalography (EEG) showed increased delta and theta waves and decreased beta waves after Shambhavi Kriya along with increased coherence between the right and left brain hemispheres (12). Delta and theta waves are typically associated with deep sleep and light sleep, respectively. Therefore, Shambhavi Kriya has many of the benefits of sleep in a 21 minute practice.

Increased Alpha Waves(associated with wakeful relaxation)ALPHA
Decreased Beta Waves(associated with activeor anxious thinking)BETA
deltaIncreased Delta Waves(associated with thedeepest stage of sleep)DELTA

Sleep Patterns

Not only does practicing Shambhavi Kriya recreate many of the brain wave patterns associated with sleep, but studies have shown that regular practice could improve sleep quality. Shambhavi Kriya practitioners reported improved sleep quality after six weeks of practice (9). Additionally, practitioners reported significantly reduced time to fall asleep and reach REM sleep along with having REM sleep that was double the duration of non-practitioners (13).

sleepREM Durationx2Time to reach REM1/3Time to fall asleep1/8Control GroupShambhavi Practitioners

Menstrual Disorders

Finally, regular Shambhavi Kriya practice for six months has shown to improve symptoms associated with menstrual problems. These include significant reductions in severe menstrual cramps, premenstrual syndrome, severe menstrual flow, irregular menstrual cycles, impairment of work, and need for surgical interventions (14).

menstrual_180% decreasein irregular cycles63% decreasein need of medical intervention83% decreasein work impairment
menstrual_257% decreasein severe symptoms of dysmenorrhea (Menstrual Cramps)87% decreasein the incidence of severe flow72% decreasein PMS psychological symptoms


  1. Upadhyay, P., Narayanan, S., Khera, T., Kelly, L., Mathur, P. A., Shanker, A., Novack, L., Pérez-Robles, R., Hoffman, K. A., Sadhasivam, S. K., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). Perceived Stress, Resilience, and Wellbeing in Seasoned Isha Yoga Practitioners Compared to Matched Controls During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Frontiers in public health, 10, 813664.
  2. Upadhyay, P., Chang, T. F. H., Hariri, S., Rallabandi, S., Yathavakilla, S., Novack, V., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). The Effect of Inner Engineering Online (IEO) Program on Reducing Stress for Information Technology Professionals: A Randomized Control Study. Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM, 2022, 9001828.
  3. Chang, T. F. H., Ramburn, T. T., Pundir, S., Purandare, P., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). The Effect of the Inner Engineering Online Program as a Positive Intervention on Subjective Well-Being and Positive Work Outcomes. Journal of integrative and complementary medicine, 28(3), 278–282.
  4. Chang, Tracy F. H. MBA, PhD. An Emerging Positive Intervention—Inner Engineering Online (IEO). Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 63(9):p e657-e659, September 2021.
  5. Chang, T. F. H., Ley, B. L., Ramburn, T. T., Srinivasan, S., Hariri, S., Purandare, P., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). Online Isha Upa Yoga for student mental health and well-being during COVID-19: A randomized control trial. Applied psychology. Health and well-being, 14(4), 1408–1428.
  6. Rangasamy V, Thampi Susheela A, Mueller A et al. The effect of a one-time 15-minute guided meditation (Isha Kriya) on stress and mood disturbances among operating room professionals: a prospective interventional pilot study. F1000Research 2019, 8:335.
  7. Hariri, S., Vishnubhotla, R. V., Reed, P. U., Rayapuraju, A., Orui, H., Balachundhar, P., Sadhasivam, S., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). Online guided meditation training (Isha Kriya) improves self-reported symptoms of anxiety and depression within 2 weeks of practice-An observational study. Frontiers in psychiatry, 13, 944973.
  8. Peterson CT, Bauer SM, Chopra D, Mills PJ, Maturi RK. Effects of Shambhavi Mahamudra Kriya, a Multicomponent Breath-Based Yogic Practice (Pranayama), on Perceived Stress and General Well-Being. Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine. 2017;22(4):788-797.
  9. Upadhyay, P., Joshi, A., Mishra, I., Kelly, L., Novack, L., Hariri, S., Kveraga, K., & Subramaniam, B. (2022). Short Term Effects of Inner Engineering Completion Online Program on Stress and Well-Being Measures. Frontiers in psychology, 13, 814224.
  10. Muralikrishnan K, Balakrishnan B, Balasubramanian K, Visnegarawla F. Measurement of the effect of Isha Yoga on cardiac autonomic nervous system using short-term heart rate variability. J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2012 Apr;3(2):91-6.
  11. Harvard Health Publishing Staff. Heart rate variability: How it might indicate well-being. Harvard Health Publishing - Harvard Medical School. Dec. 1, 2021. URL:
  12. Santhosh J, Agrawal G, Bhatia M. Spatio-Temporal Eeg Spectral Analysis of Shambhavi Maha Mudra Practice in Isha Yoga. (2015)
  13. Vinchurkar, S.A., Telles, S., Naveen, K.V., & Balakrishnan, B. (2011). T-O-123 IMPACT OF LONG TERM MEDITATION PRACTICE ON SLEEP: A MATCHED CONTROLLED TRIAL. Sleep Medicine, 12.
  14. Needhirajan TP, Maturi R and Balakrishnan B Effect of Isha Yoga on menstrual disorders. F1000Posters 2011, 2:1717 (poster)


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