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Prev Med. 2013 Dec;57(6):799-801. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2013.08.027. Epub 2013 Sep 9.

School-based mindfulness instruction for urban male youth: a small randomized controlled trial.

Author information

1
Center for Child and Community Health Research, Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, USA. Electronic address: esibinga@jhmi.edu.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) has been shown to improve mental health and reduce stress in a variety of adult populations. Here, we explore the effects of a school-based MBSR program for young urban males.

PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS:

In fall 2009, 7th and 8th graders at a small school for low-income urban boys were randomly assigned to 12-session programs of MBSR or health education (Healthy Topics-HT). Data were collected at baseline, post-program, and three-month follow-up on psychological functioning; sleep; and salivary cortisol, a physiologic measure of stress.

RESULTS:

Forty-one (22 MBSR and 19 HT) of the 42 eligible boys participated, of whom 95% were African American, with a mean age of 12.5 years. Following the programs, MBSR boys had less anxiety (p=0.01), less rumination (p=0.02), and showed a trend for less negative coping (p=0.06) than HT boys. Comparing baseline with post-program, cortisol levels increased during the academic terms for HT participants at a trend level (p=0.07) but remained constant for MBSR participants (p=0.33).

CONCLUSIONS:

In this study, MBSR participants showed less anxiety, improved coping, and a possible attenuation of cortisol response to academic stress, when compared with HT participants. These results suggest that MBSR improves psychological functioning among urban male youth.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01650233.

KEYWORDS:

Adolescent; Coping; Meditation; Mindfulness; Mindfulness meditation; Mindfulness-based stress reduction; School-based; Self-regulation; Youth

PMID:
24029559
DOI:
10.1016/j.ypmed.2013.08.027
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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