Mindfulness for Health

Mindfulness for Stress

Mindfulness in the Workplace

Online Courses


Mindfulness for Health


MINDFULNESS Y CÁNCER: APLICACIÓN DEL PROGRAMA MBPM DE" RESPIRA VIDA BREATWORKS" EN PACIENTES ONCOLÓGICOS.

TRANSLATION: MINDFULNESS AND CANCER: APPLICATION OF THE BREATHWORKS ‘LIVING WELL WITH PAIN’ MINDFULNESS-BASED PAIN MANAGEMENT PROGRAMME.

Llácer & Ramos-Campos (2018)

In this study, 22 individuals from a psycho-oncology unit (emotional support with living with cancer) in Valencia were interviewed and completed questionnaires before and after completion of the Breathworks 8-week Mindfulness for Health course. Significant improvements were found in mindfulness ability, self-compassion, well-being, satisfaction with life and vitality. In addition, reports of pain were significantly lower after taking part in the course.

 


EFFECTIVENESS OF A MINDFULNESS-BASED INTERVENTION IN THE MANAGEMENT OF MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN IN NURSING WORKERS

Lopes et al. (2018)

This study looked at 64 female nursing staff working in a Brazilian university hospital to see whether the Breathworks 8-week Mindfulness for Health course could aid the management of their musculoskeletal pain (which is very common in the nursing profession!)

Nurses completed questionnaires across 3 time-points; before the course, immediately after the course and 12 weeks after completing the course. Both immediately and 12 weeks after the course had ended, the authors found significantly reduced musculoskeletal complaints, pain-related catastrophic thinking, anxiety and depression along with significantly improved self-compassion and quality of life.


A LITERATURE REVIEW OF BREATHWORKS AND MINDFULNESS INTERVENTION

Mehan & Morris (2018)

Note from the author:

"The aim of this paper was to achieve a critical review of the literature to date concerning mindfulness interventions. Me and Julia (the paper’s other author) wanted to provide a holistic picture of review in this field and were surprised by the general failure to utilise the internal evaluations and external studies using the Breathworks mindfulness programmes.

We sought to fill this gap in the literature and the result was this paper, which highlights the importance of high-quality methodology in research studies within mindfulness and that the full programme must be employed for maximal effectiveness from the intervention. Studies that extracted a single practice, such as the body scan or self-compassion practices, found positive changes but to a smaller effect.

If you wish to ask any questions regarding the paper or just want to discuss it further, please do not hesitate and feel free to email me on [email protected]"


SELF-SELECTION ALL THE WAY: IMPROVING PATIENTS’ PAIN EXPERIENCE AND OUTCOMES ON A PILOT BREATHWORKS MINDFULNESS FOR HEALTH PROGRAMME


Agostinis, Barrow, Taylor & Gray (2017)

57 participants with chronic pain took part in the Breathworks Mindfulness for Health course; however, half of these individuals received a direct recommendation from their clinician and the other half took part in a taster session in which they could then choose to enroll onto the course if they so wished.

All participants (regardless of whether they self-referred or were refereed by their clinician) reported a significantly higher quality of life and levels of self-compassion following the course, along with lower reports of pain interfering in their lives. However, those who self-referred also experienced additional benefits such as reduced depressive symptoms, catastrophic thinking and improved levels of mindfulness. This group also retained these benefits from a longer period of time than those referred by a clinician. This following research poster was first presented at the British Pain Society Annual Conference in Birmingham 2017.

Research Poster - British Pain Society 2017.pdf


STARTING WHERE I AM: A GROUNDED THEORY EXPLORATION OF MINDFULNESS AS A FACILITATOR OF TRANSITION IN LIVING WITH A LONG-TERM CONDITION

Long et al. (2016)

This study used interview and focus group techniques to explore the retrospective experience that participants had on a Mindfulness for Health course they attended in the past. 37 course attendees (and 7 Breathworks trainers) with a range of long-term health conditions reported highly positive life changes and benefits, even years after their course ended, some of which were up to 9 years ago!

The author used these responses to develop a model of peoples experiences which she named “the Starting Where I Am’ model, which described participants becoming more aware and accepting of their conditions and themselves, responding to their needs in a more compassionate way. Interview responses across the 41 course individuals were categorised into common themes including; Getting a New Perspective; Feeling Equipped to Cope; Doing Life Differently and Seeing a Change. Another theme, Finding it Difficult emerged, highlighting common barriers to mindfulness practice such as finding the time and feeling self-indulgent.

For more information, please download this four page PDF summary by the author here.


EXPERIENCING WELLNESS WITHIN ILLNESS: EXPLORING A MINDFULNESS-BASED APPROACH TO CHRONIC BACK PAIN

Doran (2014) 

In this study, the author used interviews and observations to investigate the experience of living with persistent back-pain following participation in a Mindfulness for Health course. 16 individuals were studied 6 months after course completion, 5 of whom were also followed up 1 year after course completion.

Responses across all participants were categorised into the following themes; 'Unpacking the Experience' (being able to respond to early warning signs of flare ups), 'Changing Relationship to Pain' (learning to live in harmony with the pain rather than tighten around it), 'Letting Go of the Label' (eliminating the need to find an explanation for the pain), 'Self-compassion and Acceptance' (accepting their pain and to stop blaming themselves for flare ups), and 'Wellness Within Illness' (having a better quality of life despite the pain).

For more information on this project please download:

-       A poster presentation (PDF download) from the Annual Scientific Meeting of the British Pain Society 2009

Powerpoint Presentation summary of a subset of the results (powerpoint download)


PSYCHOBIOLOGICAL CORRELATES OF IMPROVED MENTAL HEALTH IN PATIENTS WITH MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN AFTER A MINDFULNESS-BASED PAIN MANAGEMENT PROGRAM

Brown & Jones (2013)

This study, conducted by the Human Pain Research Group (within the Clinical Neurosciences Group at the University of Manchester), found that after participating in the Breathworks Mindfulness for Health course, patients with musculoskeletal pain had greater perceived control of their pain symptoms and improved mental well-being. Along with self-report measures, this study also indicated participation in our course led to physical changes in the brain regions linked with cognitive control and emotional regulation.

 


EVALUATION OF THE BREATHWORKS MINDFULNESS-BASED PAIN MANAGEMENT PROGRAMME: EFFECTS OF WELL-BEING AND MULTIPLE MEASURES OF MINDFULNESS

Cusens et al. (2010)

53 individuals living with chronic pain were split into two groups; one receiving our Mindfulness for Health course and the other receiving their usual routine and treatment. Participants on the Mindfulness for Health course reported significantly higher levels of wellbeing than the control group, including greater acceptance towards their pain and lower levels of ruminative thinking and feelings of hopelessness. Furthermore, those on the Mindfulness for Health course perceived themselves as being significantly more mindful than the control group, including being more aware of their attention and positive moods.


Mindfulness for Stress


EVALUATION OF BREATHWORKS’ MINDFULNESS FOR STRESS 8‐WEEK COURSE: EFFECTS ON DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS, PSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS, AFFECTS, SELF‐COMPASSION, AND MINDFULNESS FACETS IN BRAZILIAN HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

Pizutti et al. (2019)

This study aimed to see whether the Breathworks 8-week Mindfulness for Stress course was effective in reducing depression and psychiatric symptoms in primary healthcare professionals (e.g. nurse, doctor, dentist…) working in Brazil. This was a particularly important group of individuals to study given healthcare professionals are unfortunately prone to high levels of stress and burnout.

The study allocated individuals to three groups; one received no intervention and instead were put on the waiting list (WL), one group received relaxation training such as deep breathing exercises (AC) and the final group received the Mindfulness for Stress course (MfS). Participants filled out questionnaires before and after the intervention, and it was found that both those in the AC and MfS group made significant reductions in depressive symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and negative affect (emotion), however these changes were greater in the MfS. Furthermore, only those in the MfS group experienced significantly higher levels of self-compassion and thought in less reactive and more mindful way. The authors noted the latter findings in particular support the Breathworks MfS programme aim to “foster a sense of compassion and equanimity in participants, bringing kindness as the main component of all meditations and practices, like the body scan, the breath awareness, and the mindful movements.”


TWO-WEEK WEB-BASED MINDFULNESS TRAINING REDUCES STRESS, ANXIETY, AND DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS IN INDIVIDUALS WITH SELF-REPORTED STRESS: A RANDOMIZED CONTROL TRIAL

Vesa et al. (2016)


This study examined the effects of a short-term web-based mindfulness program - the Breathworks/MFC Online Mindfulness Taster Course. 70 participants with severe stress were randomly assigned to a group taking the course and a control group. Pre and post questionnaire measures showed that mindfulness training increased mindfulness skills and reduced levels of perceived stress, anxiety, and depressive symptoms, with no such changes observed in the control group. Analysis suggested these changed were due to the changes in mindfulness scores, suggesting it was the mindfulness training specifically that resulted in the observed improvements rather than external factors.


MINDFULNESS IN THE WORKPLACE


MINDFULNESS INTERVENTION FOR FOUNDATION YEAR DOCTORS: A FEASIBILITY STUDY

Cotzias & Panagioti (2019)

This pilot study was conducted in order to test the feasibility of a 6-week Breathworks Mindfulness in the Workplace course for foundation year doctors, and to see whether there were indications of reduced stress and burnout, to suggest whether a larger controlled study should be carried out. As one might expect from the hectic profession, only 35% of the 20 participants were able to attend the full number of sessions, however initial outcomes were very promising, including significantly lower reported stress following completion of the course. Furthermore, through open-ended responses participants mentioned further benefits such as:

-       Feeling more mindful: “I enjoy day to day tasks more and appreciate things more’

-       Greater wellbeing: “Relaxation techniques at home have really helped me

-       switch off and sleep”

-       A positive impact on working life: “I am more of a pleasure to work with”

-       Improved relations with patients: “I am more mindful of what they are going through… less likely to react”

 


EVALUATION OF BREATHWORKS’ MINDFULNESS FOR STRESS 8‐WEEK COURSE: EFFECTS ON DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS, PSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS, AFFECTS, SELF‐COMPASSION, AND MINDFULNESS FACETS IN BRAZILIAN HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

Pizutti et al. (2019)

This study aimed to see whether the Breathworks 8-week Mindfulness for Stress course was effective in reducing depression and psychiatric symptoms in primary healthcare professionals (e.g. nurse, doctor, dentist…) working in Brazil. This was a particularly important group of individuals to study given healthcare professionals are unfortunately prone to high levels of stress and burnout.

The study allocated individuals to three groups; one received no intervention and instead were put on the waiting list (WL), one group received relaxation training such as deep breathing exercises (AC) and the final group received the Mindfulness for Stress course (MfS). Participants filled out questionnaires before and after the intervention, and it was found that both those in the AC and MfS group made significant reductions in depressive symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and negative affect (emotion), however these changes were greater in the MfS. Furthermore, only those in the MfS group experienced significantly higher levels of self-compassion and thought in less reactive and more mindful way. The authors noted the latter findings in particular support the Breathworks MfS programme aim to “foster a sense of compassion and equanimity in participants, bringing kindness as the main component of all meditations and practices, like the body scan, the breath awareness, and the mindful movements.


ONLINE COURSES 


INTERNET-DELIVERED MINDFULNESS FOR PEOPLE WITH DEPRESSION AND CHRONIC PAIN FOLLOWING SPINAL CORD INJURY: A RANDOMISED, CONTROLLED FEASIBILITY TRIAL

Hearn & Finlay (2018)

This study investigated the effects of the online Breathworks Mindfulness for Health course. 67 patients with spinal cord injury were split randomly into two groups; one received the online mindfulness for health course and the other received online educational information about spinal cord injury (e.g. the role of stress and negative thoughts).

Those who participated in the mindfulness for health course experienced significantly greater reductions in depressive symptoms, anxiety, catastrophic thinking and pain unpleasantness, as well as significantly greater improvements in levels of mindfulness. Amazingly, the improvements in depressive symptoms, catastrophic thinking and anxiety were sustained even three months after the mindfulness course had finished.


EFFECTS OF EIGHT-WEEK-WEB-BASED MINDFULNESS TRAINING ON PAIN INTENSITY, PAIN ACCEPTANCE, AND LIFE SATISFACTION IN INDIVIDUALS WITH CHRONIC PAIN

Henriksson et al. (2016)

In this study, 107 participants with chronic pain were randomly divided into two groups; either participating in the online version of the Breathworks Mindfulness for Health course or they were assigned to a control group who participated in an online forum discussing pain-related topics. The study found that those on the online Mindfulness for Health Course displayed significantly better mindfulness skills, reduced pain intensity, reduced suffering and interference from their pain, greater acceptance towards their pain, reduced emotional distress and greater satisfaction with life than those allocated to the online forum.


TWO-WEEK WEB-BASED MINDFULNESS TRAINING REDUCES STRESS, ANXIETY, AND DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS IN INDIVIDUALS WITH SELF-REPORTED STRESS: A RANDOMIZED CONTROL TRIAL

Vesa et al. (2016)

This study examined the effects of a short-term web-based mindfulness program - the Breathworks/MFC Online Mindfulness Taster Course. 70 participants with severe stress were randomly assigned to a group taking the course and a control group. Pre and post questionnaire measures showed that mindfulness training increased mindfulness skills and reduced levels of perceived stress, anxiety, and depressive symptoms, with no such changes observed in the control group. Analysis suggested these changed were due to the changes in mindfulness scores, suggesting it was the mindfulness training specifically that resulted in the observed improvements rather than external factors.