Yoga can be an effective intervention for physical and psychological symptoms and decreased ability to cope with physical, emotional, vocational, or academic stress. One group of individuals challenged regarding adequate self-care in the face of stress are personnel in university training programs for helping professions (e.g., psychology, nursing, nutrition). This feasibility study explored engagement in and effectiveness of a systematic 10-week yoga program aimed at university faculty, staff, and students. The intervention consisted of 10 weekly 90-minute sessions that were structured to include conceptual grounding, breathing, postures, and meditation. Weekly class outlines were made available to students for home practice. Participants signed informed consents, liability waivers, and health screenings. Self-reports of home practice, barriers to practice, perceived stress, and stress symptoms were used to evaluate whether the intervention was successful in engaging participants and reducing stress-related symptoms. Engagement was demonstrated by study adherence in the first 10-week series (88%; 44 of 50 enrolled), as well as re-enrollment for at least one additional 10-week series (64%; 28 of 44). Intervention success was demonstrated through repeated measure s ANOVAs of 44 participants' data, which showed significant improvement after a single 10-week series in perceived stress, as well as self-reported psychological, behavioral, and physical symptoms of stress. The study demonstrates feasibility of a yoga intervention in an academic setting and provides preliminary evidence for efficacy in stress reduction. It also supplies 10 detailed session protocols for intervention replication.
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Research Article| January 01 2015
A Yoga Stress Reduction Intervention for University Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Students
Int J Yoga Therap (2015) 25 (1): 61–77.
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Christiane Brems; A Yoga Stress Reduction Intervention for University Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Students. Int J Yoga Therap 3 January 2015; 25 (1): 61–77. doi: https://doi.org/10.17761/1531-2054-25.1.61
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