Mindfulness-Based Approaches with Children and Adolescents: A Preliminary Review of Current Research in an Emergent Field

Abstract

Interest in applications of mindfulness-based approaches with adults has grown rapidly in recent times, and there is an expanding research base that suggests these are efficacious approaches to promoting psychological health and well-being. Interest has spread to applications of mindfulness-based approaches with children and adolescents, yet the research is still in its infancy. I aim to provide a preliminary review of the current research base of mindfulness-based approaches with children and adolescents, focusing on MBSR/MBCT models, which place the regular practice of mindfulness meditation at the core of the intervention. Overall, the current research base provides support for the feasibility of mindfulness-based interventions with children and adolescents, however there is no generalized empirical evidence of the efficacy of these interventions. For the field to advance, I suggest that research needs to shift away from feasibility studies towards large, well-designed studies with robust methodologies, and adopt standardized formats for interventions, allowing for replication and comparison studies, to develop a firm research evidence base.

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Correspondence to Christine A. Burke.

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Burke, C.A. Mindfulness-Based Approaches with Children and Adolescents: A Preliminary Review of Current Research in an Emergent Field. J Child Fam Stud 19, 133–144 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10826-009-9282-x

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Keywords

  • Mindfulness meditation
  • Children
  • Adolescents
  • Families
  • Schools