Boston University Medical Center is exploring whether yoga and/or walking are effective for the treatment of major depressive disorder. More rigorous research is needed to fully explore yoga and walking as interventions for depression.
Understanding different treatments for depression is important. It allows doctors and mental health practitioners to gain information about how to best treat the condition.
The study will randomize at least 86 subjects with major depressive disorder into a 12-week intervention of either yoga or walking (twice weekly) plus homework. Four MRI scans will be conducted throughout the course of the intervention.
We are comparing two forms of exercise, yoga and walking, to determine if either is better for reducing depressive symptoms.
Iyengar Yoga group: The 12-week Iyengar Yoga intervention will consist of two 90-minute classes per week and three 30-minute homework assignments. Classes consist of approximately 60-minutes of yoga postures, 10-minutes of rest and transition, and 20-minutes of Coherent Breathing at 5 breaths per minute. Homework consists of 15-minutes of yoga postures and 15-minutes of Coherent Breathing. Coherent Breathing is CD guided. Yoga classes are taught by certified Iyengar Yoga instructors.
Walking Group: The 12-week of walking intervention will consist of two 60-minute group-walking sessions per week and three 15-minute homework walking sessions at 2.5 miles per hour on flat surface. Walking classes are conducted by research staff. You will be offered free yoga classes at the completion of the walking condition.
Both groups will be asked to complete self and clinician-administered measures, EKG recordings, and 4 MRI scans in the study.
- Aged 18-65
- Have depressive symptoms
- Scientific research
- 55 hours over 22 weeks
Receive: Up to $420, free yoga classes!
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