Treatment of Chronic Insomnia with Yoga: A Preliminary Study with Sleep–Wake Diaries

There is good evidence for cognitive and physiological arousal in chronic insomnia. Accordingly, clinical trial studies of insomnia treatments aimed at reducing arousal, including relaxation and meditation, have reported positive results. Yoga is a multicomponent practice that is also known to be effective in reducing arousal, although it has not been well evaluated as a treatment for insomnia. In this preliminary study, a simple daily yoga treatment was evaluated in a chronic insomnia population consisting of sleep-onset and/or sleep-maintenance insomnia and primary or secondary insomnia. Participants maintained sleep–wake diaries during a pretreatment 2-week baseline and a subsequent 8-week intervention, in which they practiced the treatment on their own following a single in-person training session with subsequent brief in-person and telephone follow-ups. Sleep efficiency (SE), total sleep time (TST), total wake time (TWT), sleep onset latency (SOL), wake time after sleep onset (WASO), number of awakenings, and sleep quality measures were derived from sleep–wake diary entries and were averaged in 2-week intervals. For 20 participants completing the protocol, statistically significant improvements were observed in SE, TST, TWT, SOL, and WASO at end-treatment as compared with pretreatment values.

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Correspondence to Sat Bir S. Khalsa.

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Khalsa, S.B.S. Treatment of Chronic Insomnia with Yoga: A Preliminary Study with Sleep–Wake Diaries. Appl Psychophysiol Biofeedback 29, 269–278 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10484-004-0387-0

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  • sleep
  • relaxation
  • yoga
  • insomnia