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Yoga improves balance, balance confidence, and occupational performance for adults with diabetic peripheral neuropathy: a pilot study




Willis, Leslie Ann, author
Schmid, Arlene A., advisor
Atler, Karen E., committee member
Tracy, Brian L., committee member

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The purpose of this study was to examine the preliminary efficacy of yoga on balance, balance confidence, occupational performance, and satisfaction with performance in adults with diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN). We used a non-controlled pretest-posttest design. Fifteen adults with DPN attended 8-weeks of yoga, including positive affirmations, breathing, postures, and relaxation. Balance was measured using the Berg Balance Scale (BBS); balance confidence, using the Activities-specific Balance Confidence Scale (ABC); and perceived occupational performance and satisfaction, using the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM). Significant improvements were found for balance (p=.009), balance confidence (p=.004), occupational performance (p=<.001), and satisfaction with performance (p=<.001). Improvements remained significant after the Bonferroni correction (α= .05/4- .0125). The effect sizes were medium for balance (dCohen = 0.65) and large for occupational performance and satisfaction (dCohen = 1.13, 1.07, respectively). Yoga appears to significantly improve balance, balance confidence, occupational performance, and satisfaction for adults with DPN. Further research utilizing a control group, a larger sample size, and randomization is required.


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diabetic neuropathies
occupational therapy
health promotion
chronic disease
postural balance


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