Tai chi and yoga in residential aged care: Perspectives of participants: A qualitative study.

Author: Saravanakumar P1, Higgins IJ2, Van Der Riet PJ2, Sibbritt D3
1School of Clinical Sciences Faculty of Health & Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology.
2School of Nursing and Midwifery, Faculty of Health & Medicine, The University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW, Australia.
3Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
Conference/Journal: J Clin Nurs.
Date published: 2018 Jul 2
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1111/jocn.14590. [Epub ahead of print] , Word Count: 337

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: This qualitative study examined the appropriateness and acceptability of a 14-week modified tai chi and yoga program in an Australian residential aged care setting by exploring experiences and perspectives of frail older residents and staff participants.

BACKGROUND: Older persons in residential aged care have limited opportunities for physical activity. Tai chi and yoga are mindfulness based exercise interventions that have been used to promote physical and psychological health of older adults in community settings. Whilst research on tai chi and yoga interventions in community settings are promising, there is limited research regarding the interventions' appropriateness and acceptability for frail older residents in residential care settings in Australia.

DESIGN: Descriptive and qualitative component of a mixed methods study.

METHODS: All residents who participated in the modified yoga and tai chi interventions and staff who supported them were invited. A total of 19 individuals comprising 16 residents and three staff members participated in three focus group interviews. The interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and analysed thematically using a qualitative descriptive approach.

RESULTS: Nine themes that reflected the uniqueness of the programme's mind-body approach are presented: (i) novel, new and exciting; (ii) smoothness, rhythm and flow; (iii) slow and mindful; (iv) gentle but rewarding; (v) moving whole body; (vi) perceived benefits; (vii) worthwhile; (viii) feeling alive and (ix) calming and relaxing.

CONCLUSIONS: The modified programme of tai chi and yoga was acceptable, appropriate, enjoyable and helpful. Both tai chi and yoga appear to provide appropriate physical exercise and opportunities for older persons to enhance their quality of life through interaction of physical, emotional and intellectual wellness domains.

RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: The 14- week modified programme of tai chi and yoga could be applied to frail older residential aged care population to promote health and active aging. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS: Aged care; Complementary therapies; Exercise intervention; Focus groups; Health promotion; Long-Term care; Nursing Home care; Overall well-being; Qualitative descriptive; Residential care

PMID: 29964302 DOI: 10.1111/jocn.14590