Yoga Practices as an Alternative Training for Physical Fitness in Children With Visual Impairment

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
Restricted access

Purchase Article

USD  $24.95

Student 1 year subscription

USD  $63.00

1 year subscription

USD  $84.00

Student 2 year subscription

USD  $119.00

2 year subscription

USD  $156.00

Physical activities provide fundamental benefits to children’s health and well-being. They are vital for development and healthy life, but participation of children with visual impairment is limited. Herein, the authors report results of a 16-wk yoga program, evaluating its effects on physical fitness in children with visual impairment. Eighty-three children age 9–16 years (12.37 ± 2.19) participated in a 2-arm, single-blind wait-list-controlled study at a residential school in south India. Participants (yoga group 41, controls 42) were assessed on muscle strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination, and respiratory health. Significant improvements in physical fitness were observed after the yoga intervention (Group × Time interactions for right-hand grip strength, p < .001; sit-up, p < .001; sit and reach, p < .001; bilateral plate tapping, p < .001; and peak expiratory flow rate, p < .001). Left-hand grip strength showed main effects of time, although there were no Group × Time interactions. Results demonstrate yoga’s ability to improve a wide range of physical variables in children with visual impairment.

Mohanty and Pradhan are with the Div. of Yoga and Humanities, and Hankey, the Div. of Yoga and Physical Science, SVYASA, Bangalore, India.

Pradhan (balaramp13@gmail.com, pradhanbalaram@rediffmail.com) is corresponding author.
  • Aki, E., Atasavun, S., Turan, A., & Kayihan, H. (2007). Training motor skills of children with low vision. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 104(3 Pt. 2), 1328–1336. PubMed ID: 17879667 doi:10.2466/pms.104.4.1328-1336

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Angadi, P., Jagannathan, A., Thulasi, A., Kumar, V., Umamaheshwar, K., & Raghuram, N. (2017). Adherence to yoga and its resultant effects on blood glucose in Type 2 diabetes: A community-based follow-up study. International Journal of Yoga, 10(1), 29–36. PubMed ID: 28149065 doi:10.4103/0973-6131.186159

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Augestad, L.B., & Jiang, L. (2015). Physical activity, physical fitness, and body composition among children and young adults with visual impairments: A systematic review. British Journal of Visual Impairment, 33(3), 167–182.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bhavanani, A., Udupa, K., & Ravindra, P. (2011). A comparative study of slow and fast suryanamaskar on physiological function. International Journal of Yoga, 4(2), 71–76. PubMed ID: 22022125 doi:10.4103/0973-6131.85489

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chen, T., Mao, H.C., Lai, C.H., Li, C.Y., & Kuo, C.H. (2009). The effect of yoga exercise intervention on health related physical fitness in school-age asthmatic children. Hu Li Za Zhi, 56(2), 42–52. PubMed ID: 19319803

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chena, C.C., & Linb, S.Y. (2011). The impact of rope jumping exercise on physical fitness of visually impaired students. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 32(1), 25–29. doi:10.1016/j.ridd.2010.08.010

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Council of Europe. (1988). Eurofit: Handbook for the Eurofit tests of physical fitness. Rome, Italy: Italian National Olympic Committee, Central Direction for Sport’s Technical Activities Documentation and Information Division.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • de Boer, M.R., Pluijm, S.M., Lips, P., Moll, A.C., Völker-Dieben, H.J., Deeg, D.J., & van Rens, G.H. (2004). Different aspects of visual impairment as risk factors for falls and fractures in older men and women. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, 19(9), 1539–1547. PubMed ID: 15312256 doi:10.1359/JBMR.040504

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • D’souza, C., & Avadhany, S. (2014). Effects of yoga training and detraining on physical performance measures in prepubertal children—A randomized trial. Indian Journal of Physiology Pharmacology, 58(1), 61–8.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Engel-Yeger, B., & Hamed-Daher, S. (2013). Comparing participation in out of school activities between children with visual impairments, children with hearing impairments and typical peers. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 34(10), 3124–3132. PubMed ID: 23880031 doi:10.1016/j.ridd.2013.05.049

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Garg, R., Anand, S., Sehgal, R.K., & Singh, H.P. (2015). Normative data of peak expiratory flow rate in healthy school children of Ghaziabad city—A pilot study. National Journal of Physiology, Pharmacy and Pharmacology, 5(4), 309–312. doi:10.5455/njppp.2015.5.0603201545

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hancox, R.J., & Rasmussen, F. (2018). Does physical fitness enhance lung function in children and young adults? European Respiratory Journal, 51(2), 1701374. PubMed ID: 29386347 doi:10.1183/13993003.01374-2017

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hartig, D.E., & Henderson, J.M. (1999). Increasing hamstring flexibility decreases lower extremity overuse injuries in military basic trainees. American Journal of Sports Medicine, 27(2), 173–176.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hartman, E., Smith, J., Westendorp, M., & Visscher, C. (2015). Development of physical fitness in children with intellectual disabilities. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 59(5), 439–449. PubMed ID: 24953003 doi:10.1111/jir.12142

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hashemi, M., Dehghani, L., Saboonchi, R., Roozbahani, M., & Roonasi, A. (2012). Effect of gymnastic skills on motor capabilities of 7-10 age group girls with visually impaired. European Journal of Experimental Biology, 2(3), 786–791.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Holbrook, E.A., Kang, M., & Morgan, D.W. (2013). Acquiring a stable estimate of physical activity in adults with visual impairment. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 30(1), 59–69. doi:10.1123/apaq.30.1.59

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Houwen, S., Hartman, E., & Visscher, C. (2009). Physical activity and motor skills in children with and without visual impairments. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 41(1), 103–109. PubMed ID: 19092701 doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e318183389d

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Houwen, S., Visscher, C., Hartman, E., & Lemmink, K.A. (2006). Test-retest reliability of Eurofit physical fitness items for children with visual impairments. Pediatric Exercise Science, 18(3), 300–313. doi:10.1123/pes.18.3.300

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Houwen, S., Visscher, C., Hartman, E., & Lemmink, K.A. (2007). Gross motor skills and sports participation of children with visual impairments. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 78(2), 16–23. PubMed ID: 17479570 doi:10.1080/02701367.2007.10599399

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hutson, M. (2014). Work related upper limb disorders. Indian Journal of Rheumatology, 9, S6–S12. doi:10.1016/j.injr.2014.09.016

  • Jeter, P.E., Moonaz, S.H., Bittner, A.K., & Dagnelie, G. (2015). Ashtanga-based yoga therapy increases the sensory contribution to postural stability in visually impaired persons at risk for falls as measured by the Wii balance board: A pilot randomized controlled trial. PLoS ONE, 10(6), e0129646. PubMed ID: 26107256 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0129646

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Joshi, A., & De Sousa, A. (2012). Yoga in the management of anxiety disorders. Sri Lanka Journal of Psychiatry, 3(1), 3–9. doi:10.4038/sljpsyc.v3i1.4452

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kaley-Isley, L.C., Peterson, J., Fischer, C., & Peterson, E. (2010). Yoga as a complementary therapy for children and adolescents: A guide for clinicians. Psychiatry, 7(8), 20–32. PubMed ID: 20877530

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kozub, F.M., & Oh, H.Y. (2004). An exploratory study of physical activities levels in children and adolescents with visual impairments. Clinical Kinesiology, 58(3), 1–7.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kumar, S., Sivapriya, D.V, & Thirumeni, S. (2011). Effects of suryanamaskar on cardio vascular and respiratory parameters in school students. Recent Research in Science and Technology, 3(10), 19–24.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lieberman, L., Byrne, H., Mattern, C.O., Watt, C.A., & Fernandez-Vivo, M. (2010). Health-related fitness of youths with visual impairments. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, 104(6), 349–359. doi:10.1177/0145482X1010400605

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lieberman, L., & McHugh, E. (2001). Health-related fitness of children who are visually impaired. Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness, 95, 272–287.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lieberman, L.J., & Houston-Wilson, C. (1999). Overcoming the barriers to including students with visual impairments and deaf-blindness in physical education. Review, 31, 129–138.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lieberman, L.J., Houston-Wilson, C., & Kozub, F.M. (2002). Perceived barriers to including students with visual impairments in general physical education. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 19(3), 364–377.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lundgren-Lindquist, B., & Sperling, L. (1983). Functional studies in 79-year-olds. II. Upper extremity function. Scandinavian Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine, 15(3), 117–123. PubMed ID: 6635601

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Madanmohan, Jatiya, L., Udupa, K., & Bhavanani, B.A. (2003). Effect of yoga training on handgrip, respiratory pressures and pulmonary function. Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology, 47(4), 387–392.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mohanty, S., Hankey, A., Pradhan, B., & Ranjita, R.(2016). Yoga-teaching protocol adapted for children with visual impairment. International Journal of Yoga, 9(2), 114–120. PubMed ID: 27512318 doi:10.4103/0973-6131.183716

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mohanty, S., Pradhan, B., & Nagarathna, R. (2014). The effect of yoga practice on proprioception in congenitally blind students. British Journal of Visual Impairment, 32(2), 124–135. doi:10.1177/0264619614522132

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nagarathna, R., & Nagendra, H.R. (2013). Integrated approach of yoga therapy for positive health (1st ed.). Bangalore, India: Swami Vivekananda Yoga Prakashan.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Norris, C.M. (2011). Exercise therapy. In C.M. Norris, Managing sports injuries: A guide for students and clinicians (4th ed., pp. 84–110). London, UK: Churchill Livingstone. doi:10.1016/b978-0-7020-3473-2.00009-5

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Özdirenç, M., Özcan, A., Akin, F., & Gelecek, N. (2005). Physical fitness in rural children compared with urban children in Turkey. Pediatrics International, 47(1), 26–31. PubMed ID: 15693862 doi:10.1111/j.1442-200x.2004.02008.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Prechtl, H.F., Cioni, G., Einspieler, C., Bos, A.F., & Ferrari, F. (2001). Role of vision on early motor development: Lessons from the blind. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology, 43(3), 198–201. PubMed ID: 11263691 doi:10.1111/j.1469-8749.2001.tb00187.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Purohit, S.P., Pradhan, B., & Nagendra, H.R. (2016). Effect of yoga on EUROFIT physical fitness parameters on adolescents dwelling in an orphan home: A randomized control study. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies, 11(1), 33–46. doi:10.1080/17450128.2016.1139764

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ray, U.S., Pathak, A., & Tomer, O.S. (2011). Hatha yoga practices: Energy expenditure, respiratory changes and intensity of exercise. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2011, 241294. PubMed ID: 21799675 doi:10.1093/ecam/neq046

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ross, A., & Thomas, S. (2010). The health benefits of yoga and exercise: A review of comparison studies. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 16(1), 3–12. doi:10.1089/acm.2009.0044

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Salmon, P., Lush, E., Jablonski, M., & Sephton, S.E. (2009). Yoga and mindfulness: Clinical aspects of an ancient mind/body practice. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 16(1), 59–72. doi:10.1016/j.cbpra.2008.07.002

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sivapriya, D.V, Suba, M.S., & Thirumeni, S. (2010). Effect of Nadi Shodhana pranayama on respiratory parameters in school students. Recent Research in Science and Technology, 2(11), 32–39.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Taksande, A., Jain, M., Vilhekar, K., & Chaturvedi, P. (2008). Peak expiratory flow rate of rural school children from Wardha district, Maharashtra in India. World Journal of Pediatrics, 4(3), 211–214 PubMed ID: 18822931 doi:10.1007/s12519-008-0039-1

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Telles, S., Singh, N., Bhardwaj, A.K., Kumar, A., & Balkrishna, A. (2013). Effect of yoga or physical exercise on physical, cognitive and emotional measures in children: A randomized controlled trial. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health, 7(1), 37. PubMed ID: 24199742 doi:10.1186/1753-2000-7-37

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Telles, S., & Srinivas, R.B. (1999). Autonomic and respiratory measures in children with impaired vision following yoga and physical activity programs. International Journal of Rehabilitation Health, 4(2), 117–122. doi:10.1023/A:1022912626238

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tomkinson, G.R., Carver, K.D., Atkinson, F., Daniell, N.D., Lewis, L.K., Fitzgerald, J.S., & Ortega, F.B. (2018). European normative values for physical fitness in children and adolescents aged 9–17 years: Results from 2 779 165 Eurofit performances representing 30 countries. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 52(22), 1445–14563. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2017-098253

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Touzalin-Chretien, P., Ehrler, S., & Dufour, A. (2009). Dominance of vision over proprioception on motor programming: Evidence from ERP. Cerebral Cortex, 20(8), 2007–2016. PubMed ID: 20026485 doi:10.1093/cercor/bhp271

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tuncay, C., Belgin, B., Aydin, M., Bergun, M., & Aydin, O. (2004). Physical fitness levels of blind and visually impaired goalball team players. Isokinetics and Exercise Science, 12, 247–252. doi:10.3233/IES-2004-0182

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • van der Niet, A.G., Smith, J., Oosterlaan, J., Scherder, E.J., Hartman, E., & Visscher, C. (2016). Effects of a cognitively demanding aerobic intervention during recess on children’s physical fitness and executive functioning. Pediatric Exercise Science, 28(1), 64–70. PubMed ID: 26252883 doi:10.1123/pes.2015-0084

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Williams, P.E., & Goldspink, G. (1973). The effect of immobilization on the longitudinal growth of striated muscle fibres. Journal of Anatomy, 116(pt 1), 45–55. PubMed ID: 4798240

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • World Health Organization. (2010). Global recommendations on physical activity for health. Geneva, Switzerland: Author. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/dietphysicalactivity/publications/9789241599979/en/

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 512 512 162
Full Text Views 47 47 10
PDF Downloads 24 24 3