DRL - Yoga for Persons with severe visual impairment: a feasibility study
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Resource: Yoga for persons with severe visual impairment: a feasibility study

Author: Pamela E Jeter PhD
Gislin Dagnelie PhD
Sat Bir Khalsa PhD
Steffany Haaz PhD
Ava K Bittner PhD/OD

Attachments: Jeter Yoga for persons with severe visual impairment a feasibility study.pdf


Source of Submission

- IAYT Members (outside of SYTAR Presentations)

- SYR 2011

Type of Conference Material
- Accepted Research Abstracts and Posters

- Research

- Ashtanga

File Content:

Yoga for persons with severe visual impairment: a feasibility study
P. E. Jeter(1), G. Dagnelie(1), S.B.S. Khalsa(2), S. Haaz(3), A. K. Bittner(1)
1 Lions Vision Research and Rehabilitation Center, Wilmer Eye Institute, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
2 Division of Sleep Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School
3 Corporate Health Solutions, Jamison, PA
Keywords: Yoga, Blind, Visual Impairment, Secondary Symptoms

Objective: This preliminary study aims to establish the feasibility of yoga as a therapeutic intervention for improving sleep disturbance, balance and negative psychosocial states in legally blind retinal disease patients.
Methods: Ten legally blind participants (mean age of 49 ± 14 years) were randomized to receive an 8-week yoga intervention (n=5) or to a waitlist control (n=5) group. They convened for one session/week with an instructor and performed two home-based practice sessions/week using an audio CD. Assessments included the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and were administered at baseline and post intervention. During the waitlist control’s subsequent participation in the yoga program, a Timed One-Leg balance measure, respiratory rate, and the Philadelphia Mindfulness Scale (PHLMS) were tested for feasibility before and after their participation. A Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test was performed to determine whether there was a significant change in scores from baseline to postintervention. A qualitative exit survey was completed after both groups received the yoga treatment.
Results: The yoga intervention was evaluated for 4 subjects vs. 5 waitlist control subjects. One subject was excluded from the analysis because she failed to follow instructions and missed 2 classes during the intervention. The results trended toward significance for all questionnaires (PSQI (global): z = -1.84, p = 0.07; PSQI (sleep onset latency subscale): z = -1.6 p = 0.11; PSS: z = -1.83, p = 0.07; BAI: z = -1.83, p = 0.07; BDI: z = -1.6, p = 0.11). Most importantly, all scores changed in the direction of reduced negative symptoms after the yoga intervention. During the waitlist group’s participation, both respiratory rate and balance trended toward improvement on average (p=0.11). The PHLMS subscale measures were marginally significant for improved awareness (p=0.06) but not increased acceptance. In the exit survey, 8 subjects responded and reported being extremely (5/8) or mostly (3/8) satisfied with the yoga program.
Conclusions: This pilot study was not powered to detect statistically significant effects, yet these are promising results that indicate the potential for improved sleep, psychosocial states and balance, which warrant further investigation with more legally blind subjects and an active control protocol.

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