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Yoga, Mindfulness Aid Anxiety in Elementary School Children

Improvements in emotional, psychosocial quality of life seen with eight-week classroom intervention

FRIDAY, April 13, 2018 (HealthDay News) — Classroom-based yoga and mindfulness activities may be effective tools for stress management among elementary school students, according to a study published online April 10 in Psychology Research and Behavior Management.

Alessandra N. Bazzano, Ph.D., M.P.H., from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in New Orleans, and colleagues randomized 20 students to an intervention group that received small group yoga/mindfulness activities for eight weeks and a control group of 32 students receiving care as usual. The impact on quality of life and emotional well-being was assessed.

The researchers found that the yoga-based intervention was associated with an increase in student emotional and psychosocial well-being, as measured by the Brief Multidimensional Students’ Life Satisfaction Scale-Peabody Treatment Progress Battery and the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (P = 0.001). Results were similar with adjustment. Perceived barriers to introducing yoga in the classroom were high and similar at two data collection time points; however, perceived benefits remained high.

“The intervention was associated with a significant improvement in emotional and psychosocial quality of life in the intervention group when compared to the control group, suggesting that yoga/mindfulness interventions may improve symptoms of anxiety among students,” the authors write. “Yoga/mindfulness activities may facilitate stress management among elementary school students and may be added as a complement to social and emotional learning activities.”

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