The Center for Mind-Body Medicine

I. Mind-body skills group trainings in Israel result in increased personal and professional use of mind-body skills among healthcare professionals

Halberstad N, Staples JK, Addesky R, Gordon JS. Mind-body groups: concepts, practice, and results (The First International Conference of the Unit of Applied Neuroscience on Training the Mind: Mindfulness, Brain, and Behavior, Dec 30, 2009 Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center, Israel).

Data gathered at the Initial and the Advanced Mind-Body Medicine Training Programs in Israel in 2006 showed an increase in the use of mind-body modalities, both personally and professionally, as well as an increase in optimism, a decrease in anxiety, anger and fatigue, and improved spirituality scores.

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The use of meditation and imagery increased the most. Personal meditation doubled from 5 to 10 days a month and imagery increased from 4 to 6 days a month. Professionally, there was a significant increase in the use of biofeedback, autogenics, drawings, meditation, and imagery used in a small group setting.

Participants felt significantly more optimistic about their personal future following the training and scored significantly higher on how much of a positive contribution they feel they make to the psychological welfare of their fellow citizens. They also reported being significantly less troubled by the level of conflict within their society and felt that the lives of their family members and close acquaintances were in less danger.

Participants reported significantly lower levels of anxiety, anger, confusion and fatigue on the Profile of Mood States questionnaire and increased levels of vigor. All spirituality subscale scores were significantly higher following the Advanced training including purpose and meaning in life; inner resources; interconnectedness; and transcendence.

II. Mind-body skills group training results in decreased PTSD symptoms, improved mood, and enhanced spirituality in healthcare professionals following Hurricane Katrina

Attending the Mind-Body Medicine Training programs in 2007 in New Orleans following hurricanes Katrina and Rita helped health care professions decrease their posttraumatic stress symptoms, improved their mood, and enhanced aspects of spirituality. Three months following the training there was also a significant decrease in compassion fatigue/secondary trauma caused by working with traumatized populations.

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63 participants completed questionnaires on posttraumatic stress (PTSD), mood, and spirituality. There was a significant decrease (17%) in the overall PTSD scores following the training. Significantly fewer participants also reported hyperarousal symptoms (i.e. difficulty sleeping and concentrating, outbursts of anger, exaggerated startle response, hyper-vigilance) (42% pre vs 15% post-training). There were statistically significant improvements in anxiety, depression, anger, fatigue and vigor after the training.

Scores were significantly increased in participants’ sense of the following aspects of spirituality: (1) purpose and meaning in life; (2) inner resources; (3) unifying interconnectedness; and (4) transcendence.

III. Survey of training program participants 1995 – 2008 shows mind-body skills reach over 20,000 individuals

People attending Center training programs from 1995 to 2008 were surveyed to assess how they were using the training and how many people were being taught how to use mind-body skills by those who have been trained (i.e. how many people are being reached). Results of the summary showed that an estimated 20,000-30,000 people have been taught in mind-body skills groups by previous training program participants. Those trained in the program have used mind-body skills with populations with a wide variety of physical and mental health conditions.

Additional published research, research in progress and program evaluations can be accessed in the menu at the right.

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