Yoga & Science

Dr Pam Jeter: Can Yoga Help the Visually Impaired Find Balance?

Dr. Pam Jeter looks at yoga research as a necessary body of evidence that requires rigorous studies in order to judge the safety, efficacy, and effectiveness of yoga practice. She explains how she was invited to speak about how exactly the National Institute for Health (NIH) decides to fund yoga research. Dr. Jeter serves as a Scientific Review Officer at the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) at the NIH in Bethesda, where she coordinates the scientific review of grant applications on mind and body interventions submitted to NCCIH in response to various funding announcements. She has also taught research literacy and academic publishing practices for graduate students at the Maryland University of Integrative Health.

Dr. Jeter has published peer-reviewed articles on yoga, presented at professional conferences and community-based groups and received recognition for her work in mind-body science. At the Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute, she conducted research evaluating the therapeutic benefits of yoga for individuals with severe vision loss in order to reduce the risk of falls. Humans regulate their balance with their sensory systems, and Dr. Jeter sought to explore how, when vision is not contributing to balance, people may be able to upregulate their systems of balance. In this installment, she explains how examining the ways the visually impaired were affected by yoga involved not only looking at their reduced risk of falls, but also an examination of how yoga practice potentially decreased their psychological distress.

07:05 | 2019

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