The experience of mindful yoga for older adults with depression

Ka Chun Lee, Wai Kit Tang, Daniel Bressington

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction Mindful yoga combines yoga techniques with the mindfulness-based stress reduction approach. Previous studies on mindful yoga have reported improvements in depression for working-age adults, but no studies have been conducted with older people. 

Aims To explore the experiences of older adults with depression participating in a mindful yoga group to establish whether the approach has potential as a future intervention for this client group. 

Method This study adopted a qualitative descriptive method and used inductive content analysis. Eighteen in-depth individual interviews were conducted with nine participants (each participant had one interview following the programme and another four weeks later). 

Results Six main themes emerged: “improved physical status,” “actively involved in the community,” “positive psychological effects,” “perceived therapeutic ingredients,” “facilitators of practising mindful yoga” and “barriers to practising mindful yoga.”. 

Discussion Most participants reported benefitting from the programme. Two male participants expressed that exercises were too challenging and more suited to women, suggesting single-sex groups may be more acceptable.

Implications for practice Mindful yoga may be an acceptable/useful intervention for older adults with depression, but future studies are required to establish its feasibility and potential efficacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-100
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes


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