Six Weeks of Yoga Improves Psychological Health in Older Adults

Researchers from Walden University in Minneapolis conducted a randomized, controlled study to assess the impact of a yoga intervention on the psychological health of older adults.

Subjects were 98 older adults, ages 65 to 92, randomly assigned to 6 weeks of either chair yoga, chair exercise or a control group condition. They were assessed pre-and post-intervention, and at one month follow-up on their anger, anxiety, depression, morale and self-efficacy.

Measuring instruments used were State Anger Expression Inventory, State Anxiety Inventory, Geriatric Depression Scale, Lawton's PGC Morale Scale, General Self-Efficacy Scale, Chronic Disease Self-Efficacy Scales, and Self- Control Schedule.

Yoga participants improved more than either exercise or control participants in anger, anxiety, depression, well-being, general self-efficacy, and self-efficacy for daily living. Changes in self-control moderated changes in psychological health.

The investigators conclude that the potential of 6 weeks of chair yoga for improving psychological health in older adults was supported.

Citation: Bonura KB1, Tenenbaum G. Effects of yoga on psychological health in older adults. Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 2014 Sep;11 (7): pages 1334-41. doi: 10.1123/jpah.2012-0365. Epub 2013 Dec 20.

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