Exploring Yoga as a Sensory Based Intervention for Children with Sensory Processing Difficulties: A Systematic Literature Review

Mel Campbel, Suzanne Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: This paper investigates the evidence of using yoga with school aged children to support their behavioural responses, self-regulation and motor abilities and their relationship between sensory processing difficulties. The aim is to determine if yoga can support individuals with sensory processing difficulties as a way to aid both sensory modulation difficulties and sensory motor disorders. Methodology: An extensive search was conducted for studies published between 2006-2017 for review (Medline, CINAHL Plus, Scopus, AMED, PUBMED, PsycINFO, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Google scholar). In addition reference lists were manually searched for relevant studies. Duplicates and those not meeting the inclusion criteria were removed. Nine empirical studies met the criteria and were selected for this study. The reviewed literature explored the use of yoga practices including meditation, asana (poses), pranayama (breathing) techniques and/or relaxation to support children with behaviour and emotional regulation and their motor abilities. Findings: The reviewed literature explored the use of yoga practices including meditation, asana (poses), pranayama (breathing) techniques and/or relaxation to support children with emotional and self-regulation, behaviour, cognitive function and their motor abilities. Findings were limited yet, demonstrated how the different practices involved in yoga; postures (asana), breathing (pranayama) and relaxation offers several therapeutic tools to complement the sensory based interventions Occupational Therapists use with children with sensory processing difficulties. Value: The results highlight the need for further research in this area with more robust designs of larger sample sizes and longer duration of intervention in order to ensure the efficacy of this practice as a sensory based intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
JournalMOJ Yoga and Physical Therapy
Volume2
Publication statusPublished - 10 Nov 2017

Keywords

  • Yoga
  • Sensory processing
  • Children
  • Self-regulation
  • Behaviour
  • Austism
  • ADHD
  • Motor Abilities.

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