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Transcript of yoga nidra
“…I feel, not just when I’m doing Yoga Nidra, but since doing it; that I’m more able to recognise what I’m doing and kind of pull myself back. Because so often, oh, I’ve been able to go with that thought and I’m, you know, six years down the line working out the man I’m going to marry or something, you know. Crazy stuff. And I’m not going to marry anybody by the way. [BOTH LAUGH]. You know I have no plans, that’s how mad it is. So I’m much more able to recognise that. ”
Exploring the lived experiences of yoga nidra practitioners: from relaxation to spirituality, an interpretive phenomenological analysis
Researchers Novice Status
Time Restrictions/ Triangulation
Self selecting sample
"That it’s putting me in touch with what’s already there but that sense of a me that’s connected to every other me and every other thing. Sounding really deep now. But I do, I think that that’s probably, now that I’m talking about it. I’ve never actually, not verbalised and not even thought to myself, ‘Oh that’s what it’s doing’, but where I was trying to describe to you, like this mystical thing or something, I think that that’s actually what it is, it’s not mystical it’s normal, really, but it’s just that for myself anyway; and perhaps most people, I’m not with that real me a lot of the time, I’m with the mask outside me and I think that this is probably a profound way and yet so simple of realising that."
Expanding view of self
"I was really seriously ill I had ulcerative colitis really badly and you know I couldn’t live my life and I was really obliterated by it. ......... it was a hard time, I was really, really scared and it had an effect on mental health as well, I was very depressed…sometimes I could just about get to the shops …. you know my resolution was that, I am a healthy woman ...it just felt like I could help myself and, the worst place for me to be is feeling completely helpless and that I’m at the mercy of doctors and people telling me what to do and pills and that kind of thing I hate being in that place and now ... I can stick on a pair of headphones and press play. I can always help myself and that’s, when I; knowing that is life changing. it’s being able to help myself and the fact that the way I help myself is so special and so profound......."
“..I just, I felt like I was sort of detached from myself and just in this place where I almost; I sort of couldn’t move, really, I was awake and I could hear but I was just completely relaxed and my mind was clear and it was really profound…”
Loss of awareness of body
“Well I think in my previous life…[LAUGHS], I would have just seen relaxation as like, just falling on the couch and watching TV,…. but that was seen as relaxing option. Whereas now, it’s absolutely not at all. It would just play havoc with my mind. TV is just a distraction….. Yoga Nidra instead!
Profound Relaxation leads to changes in occupational lives
“…I was just like, ‘Oh my God this is the most extraordinary thing’, because I just went. I had such a busy mind and you know I’ve always had this busy, busy, busy mind and I just.. and then I found the nidra just took me into this other place and I just, it is like, This is unbelievable…..”
“…Witnessing. I think that’s really as important as well. To just witness your own reactions and witness sensations, witness whatever happens, just that concept of just accepting it and witnessing it and not analysing it or just; you know; just let it be there and just be aware of it..”
Being the Witness
Researcher acknowledges insider/outsider status
Acknowledge debate setting aside or putting foreground researcher subjectivity (Jenkins et al 1998)
Bracketing/ Reflective Journal(Sim and Wright 2000)
IPA has been criticised for being researcher led (Smith et al 2009)
Research would have been more difficult had it not been for insider status (culturally closed area for discussion)
Pilot study conducted (Silverman 2010)
Member checked by 70% of participants (Merriam 2009)
Trustworthiness/ Researcher Stance / Pilot
COT Code of Ethics (2010)
University code of ethical approval granted
Participant and researcher safety/autonomy/highest priority e.g neutral environment, support info, p/w protected computer etc (Sim & Wright 2000)
Lived Virtues & Values of Qualitative Research (Colyer and Holley 2010)
Aims and Objectives
Aim: To explore the lived experiences of people who have been practicing yoga nidra regularly for at least 3 months.
Discover the what, where, when and how of the experience of practicing yoga nidra.
Explore how yoga nidra impacts on their different areas of life
What is the meaning of the practice?
What are the lived experiences of practitioners during yoga nidra?
Aims and Objectives
Yoga nidra, a guided practice of withdrawing the mind from the external experiences, with an 8-10 stage protocol(Saraswati 2000) (Saraswati 2003) (Saraswati 2009) (Miller 2005)
Has roots in ancient tantric systems (Saraswati 2003)
Easier to perform then MBSR(Pritchard et al 2010)
Practitioners do not require concentration(Kumar 2010).
Practiced by with audio support or by live instructor (Stankovic 2011)
What Is Yoga Nidra?
Ample evidence for the effects of mindfulness (Baer 2003) (Didonna 2009)
Recent guidelines include MBSR (NICE 2009) delivered by OTs in mental health settings
Clinical Evidence growing for other yoga based practices - one such practice is called Yoga Nidra (meaning conscious sleep) (Caldwell et al 2010) (Gura 2010)
OTs interested in meaning its’ relationship with health and wellbeing (Wilcock 1993)
Research needed to develop empirical based knowledge (Wilcock 1993)
Need to understand how is meaning experienced and generated?” (Reed et al 2011)
Why for OT?
Financial Climate leads to NHS review of costs (Department of Health 2013)
Calls to improve patient focused care, experience and compassion(Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry 2010).
Increase in professional burnout (Spickard et al 2002)
Stew (2011) healthcare professionals need support in addressing numerous stressors inherent in their work
International Health Humanities Network (2013) calls for a sense of mutual recovery between staff/patients
Yoga Nidra could provide simple cost effective tool to improve patient care and staff welbeing
Stew (2010) highlights that Mindfulness based practices that profoundly effect levels of fatigue and compassion fatigue- this study explores how that may be happening, how yoga nidra may fit into that
Enhances knowledge base for rest as a meaningful occupation and explores the relationship between relaxation, mindfulness and spirituality
Sheds light on meanings around spiritual occupations
Explores relationship of consciousness and occupation
Could be used as a self care tool for health care staff
Points to profound experiences of relaxation
Potential opportunities for OT’s in future, may wish to explore in potential in recovery and rehabilitation
Conclusion/Implications for OT
“I’ve imagined coming from an operation in a hospital and waking up in a great deal of pain…...and I can hear people groaning and I realise it’s me….The person; I thought someone is kicking off in this room really groaning and moaning, I wonder who it is, I must be in the recovery room; and then eventually you realise it’s you…. for me that would have been quite a traumatic experience at the time but the whole disconnection from myself.. I can look back on and think, yeah, my yoga nidra view of that is… I wasn’t traumatised anymore by it, I realised it was traumatic for me, or could have been. But I don’t feel traumatised by it any more”
Perspective on Story
Literature review conducted with psychinfo, AMED, Cinahl /Cochrane
Effective with PTSD amongst War Veterans (Stankovic 2011)
Effective with Healthcare workers reducing daytime sleepiness and compassion fatigue
Induces psychological changes – reducing guilt (Kumar 2010)
Effective stress reduction for those with chronic illness such as MS and cancer patients (Pritchard et al et 2010)
Only one Qualitative feasibility study found- amongst War Veterans(Stankovic 2011) no thematic analysis was conducted
Summary Literature Review
Time of Day (afternoon meant falling asleep)
Motivators (Family encouragement, Ill health/Life Crisis)
Voice (Participants dont like all voices of instructors)
Challenges (Occupational choices, Stillness, staying awake during practice)
Personal Growth/Living consciously
How I use it
Semi-structured interviews (Holloway & Wheeler 2010)
Environmental consideration to interview design
Poster in community yoga centre Purposive/snowball/opportunistic sampling 6 female 2 male
“when people are engaged with an experience of something major in their lives, they begin to reflect on the significance of what is happening and IPA research aims to engage with these reflections”. (Smith et al 2012)
conscious sleep: from relaxation to spirituality, an interpretive phenomenological analysis
Baer RA (2003) Mindfulness training as a clinical intervention: a conceptual
and empirical review. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10(2),
Caldwell, K., Harrison, M., Adams, M., Quin, R. H., and Greeson, J. (2010)
‘Developing Mindfulness in College Students through Movement-based Courses
Effects on Self-regulator, Self-efficacy, Mood, Stress, and Sleep Quality’,
Journal of American College Health 58 (5), 433-42
College of Occupational Therapists (2010) Code of Ethics and Professional
Conduct. London: College of Occupational Therapists
Colyar, J., and Holley, K. (2010) ‘Narrative Theory and the Construction of
Qualitative Texts’. in New Approaches to Qualitative Research: Wisdom and
Department of Health (2013) Making the NHS More Efficient and Less
Bureaucratic [white paper]. London: Stationery Office
Didonna, F. (2009) Clinical Handbook of Mindfulness. New York: Springer
Gura, S. (2010) ‘Mindfulness in Occupational Therapy Education’. Occupational
Therapy in Health Care 24 (3), 266-74
International Health Humanities Network (2013) Creative Practice As Mutual
Recovery: Connecting Communities for Mental Health and Well-Being [online]
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