Her most recent research, published earlier this year in the journal Military Medicine, explored the effect that practicing yoga can have on PTSD. And the findings were positive: Veterans participating in a clinical yoga program experienced increased “psychological flexibility” as a result of their yoga practice, and psychological flexibility was associated with lower PTSD and stress symptoms.
The study is a small one, and its conclusions emphasize the importance of follow-up research with active comparison groups and more comprehensive data on frequency of yoga practice amongst participants. It does, however, suggest that those with PTSD, veterans or otherwise, might consider trying yoga as a tool for managing symptoms, and that those of us who struggle with stress, whether or not that stress is associated with PTSD, might give it a try as well.
This is far from the first time that yoga has been touted by medical research. But it’s another example of the science behind an increasingly popular practice.
If you’re struggling with stress, try busting out your yoga mat home, join a free class at your local community center, or find a studio where you can commit to taking a class each week. The effect might be more powerful than you expect.