Pranayama Meditation (Yoga Breathing) for Stress Relief: Is it Beneficial for Teachers?

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Australian Journal of Teacher Education, ISSN: 0313-5373, Vol: 42, Issue: 9, Page: 142-159

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Hepburn, Stevie-Jae; McMahon, Mary
Edith Cowan University
Social Sciences; meditation; yoga; education; stress management; teaching; pranayama meditation; teacher health; teacher stress; Other Teacher Education and Professional Development
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article description
The effects of stress can have a significant impact on an individual's personal life, relationship with colleagues, job satisfaction and career prospects. If unmanaged, stress can be the trigger that drives talented, motivated teachers out of our classrooms and into other professions. Yoga and meditation have been prescribed as a form of complementary alternative medicine for the treatment of stress, anxiety and depression. The current exploratory, mixed-methods case study aimed to determine if the participants in a five-week pranayama meditation (yoga breathing) course experienced a degree of stress relief. The course included one 60-minute weekly meditation class focusing on breath awareness. The Perceived Stress Scale was administered pre and post-course, weekly journal reflections were recorded, and a structured interview was completed at the conclusion of the course. Findings indicated that the participants experienced a decrease in their perceived level of stress. Participants reported benefits in both their professional and personal lives.