Objective: The aim of this study was to determine whether a comprehensive, yoga-based wellness program could positively affect multiple markers of health and wellness in an employee population. Design Self-selected employees who enrolled in a new wellness class were invited to participate in a yoga-based wellness program. Participants met six days per week (Monday through Saturday) at 5:10 am. Sessions lasted for at least one hour, and the program was six weeks long. Each session consisted of power yoga interwoven with philosophical concepts and instruction about the benefits of mindfulness, breath, and meditation. Certain classes each week incorporated large and small group sharing, journal writing, and mindful eating exercises. Main outcome measures were biometric measures (height, weight, blood pressure, flexibility, body fat) and quality-of-life measures (physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being). Results Fifty-nine employees were invited to join the program; 50 consented to participate, of which 37 (74%) attended more than 90% of classes. Participant age ranged from 24 to 76 years. Statistically significant improvements were observed in weight (-4.84 ± 5.24 kg; P < .001), diastolic blood pressure (-2.66 ±8.31 mm/Hg; P = .03), flexibility score (relative change 11% ± 20.92; P <.001), body fat percentage (-1.94 ±2.68; P < .001), and overall quality of life (linear analog self-assessment [LASA] score 3.73 ± 8.11; P = .03). Conclusions This pilot study suggests that a yoga-based, comprehensive wellness program is both feasible and efficacious in creating positive, short-term improvements in multiple domains of health and wellness for a population of employees.
- employee health
- health promotion
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Complementary and alternative medicine