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Body esteem and psychological well-being in female yoga practitioners

Kelley, Joy Lyn
Scope and Method of Study: Body esteem and psychological well-being were studied in female yoga practitioners. Female yoga practitioners (N=101) from studios located in the Southwest U.S. were asked to complete a demographic questionnaire, the body esteem scale, and the psychological scales of well-being. Another interpreted variable was age.
Findings and Conclusions: A positive correlation was found among subscales for body esteem and psychological well-being. A linear regression found the adjusted R^2 to be 15%. Analysis of variance for yoga practice and body esteem indicated a significant influence of yoga practice on body esteem F = 7.882 between beginner and advanced yoga practitioners groups. About half of the participants were beginners with less than 24 months experience; while the other half ranged from 2 to 36 years. The ANOVA of yoga practice and psychological well-being showed no significance and needs further investigation. The data for this study was skewed towards many respondents being advanced practitioners. Age was positively correlated to psychological well-being. Despite the decline in health with the aging process, women yoga practitioners showed increased psychological well-being with age. Body esteem did not correlate with age raising questions for further study about women of all ages and their struggle with feeling good about their bodies.