The Effects of Centering Prayer Compared to Exercise on Undergraduate Student’s Everyday Stress

Antonio Krajancic, Heidi Walker, & Christopher Peet

Meditation and exercise have both been shown to have similar stress-reducing effects. Most of the research on meditation comes from eastern Buddhist and Hindu traditions. Centering Prayer is a spiritual form of meditation rooted in the Christian tradition of contemplative prayer that has received little research. In this study, the participants were split into two groups, one group practiced Centering Prayer for 20 minutes a day over a 6-week period, while the other group performed deliberate exercise for 20 minutes a day over the same 6-week period. The goal of this study was to compare the effectiveness of practicing Centering Prayer to that of performing deliberate exercise on undergraduate students’ experience of stress.

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