Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Poststroke balance improves with yoga: a pilot study.

Schmid AA, Van Puymbroeck M, Altenburger PA, Schalk NL, Dierks TA, Miller KK, Damush TM, Bravata DM, Williams LS. Poststroke balance improves with yoga: a pilot study. Stroke. 2012 Sep 1; 43(9):2402-7.

Related HSR&D Project(s)

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Balance impairment is common after stroke; modified yoga may be able to improve balance and other important poststroke variables. Scientific-evidence is needed to support such treatment interventions. The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of a yoga-based rehabilitation intervention on balance, balance self-efficacy, fear of falling (FoF), and quality of life after stroke. METHODS: This was a prospective, randomized, pilot study of yoga-based rehabilitation for people with chronic stroke. All yoga sessions were taught by a registered yoga therapist, occurred twice per week for 8 weeks and included seated, standing, and floor postures with relaxation and meditation. Balance was assessed with the Berg Balance Scale, balance self-efficacy with the Activities-specific Balance Confidence Scale, FoF with a dichotomous yes/no question, and quality of life with the Stroke Specific Quality of Life scale. RESULTS: There were no significant differences between wait-list control (n = 10) and yoga (n = 37) groups in baseline or follow-up scores. However, using within-group comparisons, yoga group data demonstrated significant improvement in balance (Berg Balance Scale, 41.3 11.7 vs 46.3 9.1; P < 0.001) and FoF (51% vs 46% with FoF; P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: A group yoga-based rehabilitation intervention for people with chronic stroke has potential in improving multiple poststroke variables. Group yoga may be complementary to rehabilitation, may be possible in medical-based and community-based settings, and may be cost-effective. Further testing of group yoga-based rehabilitation interventions is warranted. Clinical Trial Registration- URL: Unique Identifier: NCT01109602.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.