International Journal of Yoga
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE Table of Contents   
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 229-238
Development and feasibility testing of a brief yoga module on well-being and cognition of postgraduate mental healthcare students in tertiary settings

1 Department of Psychiatric Social Work, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Integrative Medicine, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Member Secretary, National Medical Commission, Govt of India, India

Correspondence Address:
Aarti Jagannathan
Department of Psychiatric Social Work, Room No: 106, Govindaswamy Building, 1st Floor, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Hombegowda Nagar, Hosur Road, Bengaluru, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoy.ijoy_87_21

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Background: Mental health-care students experience stress and burnout during their training period. Yoga has been found to be helpful in improving one's mental health and well-being. Aim: The aim of this study is to develop and test the feasibility of a brief yoga module for postgraduate mental health-care students. Methods: Amixed method design was used. Phase 1 involved development and validation of the yoga module using the qualitative exploratory method. Phase II tested the feasibility of the module on a sample of 28 first-year postgraduate students. These students participated in a 15-day (30 min/day) brief yoga module for improving their well-being and cognition (mirror neuron activation [MNA] and tower of London task as assessed on day 0, day 15 (2 weeks), and day 30 (4 weeks). Qualitative feedback of the student volunteers was also recorded. Results: Significant improvement in the well-being scores was observed in the students who adhered to the yoga practice after 2 weeks and 4 weeks. Functional near infra-red spectroscopy (fNIRS) data indicated that adherents showed significant activation of left somatosensory region of the brain and deactivation in the right primary somatosensory region during the static and active phase of the MNA task, respectively. Adherent group showed significant improvement in reaction time during “Zero-Moves” tasks of Tower of London. The qualitative thematic analysis showed that the module helped improve the well-being and mental health of the students. Conclusion: The yoga program was found to have high need and medium to high feasibility. A systemic integration of student well-being-oriented interventions including yoga in the curriculum of postgraduate mental health-care courses is advocated.

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