Year of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Department or School/College
Health and Human Performance
Dr. Laura Dybdal
Dr. Blakely Brown
Dr. Annie Sondag, Dr. Dan Lee
Trauma sensitive yoga intervention, female, sleep, veteran, college student
University of Montana
Alternative and Complementary Medicine | Public Health
Early sleep research in the 1970’s reported that sleep problems were due to cognitive and physiological arousal (Kennedy, 2014; Ong, Ulmer, & Manber, 2005). Recent research suggests that in addition to arousal, maladaptive beliefs and attitudes contribute to sleep problems (Kennedy, 2014; Ong et al., 2005). Techniques to decrease cognitive and physiological arousal include exercise, relaxation techniques, and talk therapy (Kennedy, 2014; Ong et al., 2005. To address maladaptive attitudes and beliefs mindfulness and acceptance techniques such as yoga are recommended (Kennedy, 2014; Ong et al., 2005). Untrue beliefs about how much sleep is needed and a tendency to avoid distressing emotions are patterns in individuals with sleep problems (Kennedy, 2014; Ong et al., 2005). Yoga was historically thought to balance physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual dimensions of an individual (Ross and Thomas, 2010). During a yoga class, individuals are encouraged to practice self- awareness and acceptance of their cognitive and emotional states (Ong et al., 2005). Yoga could change individuals’ maladaptive beliefs and attitudes in addition to decreasing cognitive and physiological arousal (Ong et al., 2005).
To test the impact of yoga on sleep, this researcher analyzed secondary sleep data from a pilot research study that was conducted in the spring of 2018 at University of Montana’s (UM) Mind Body lab. Twelve female participants in the pilot study completed a one-hour trauma-informed Hatha yoga class once per week for four weeks and recorded sleep measures for five weeks. The researcher was interested in whether participants’ sleep scores significantly differed during the five-week study. A secondary research question asked whether female veteran college students composite sleep scores differed over the five-week study and whether female non-veteran college students composite sleep scores differed over the five-week study. This researcher also asked whether four sleep variables differed over the five-week study and whether those four variables and a composite score differed in each age group over the five-week study. Results were non- significant and, this research confirms that further studies on trauma- informed yoga and sleep need to be conducted.
Forzley, Erica, "ASSESSING THE IMPACT OF A YOGA INTERVENTION ON SLEEP IN FEMALE VETERAN AND NON-VETERAN COLLEGE STUDENTS" (2019). Graduate Student Theses, Dissertations, & Professional Papers. 11386.
© Copyright 2019 Erica Forzley