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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Impact of Therapeutic Yoga on Adult Female Survivors of Child Sex Abuse in Nicaragua: Exploring the Mind-Body Relationship in a Culturally Embedded Healing Process
by Fields, Abbie, Ph.D., Universidad Centroamericana (Nicaragua), 2019, 199; 27724580
Abstract (Summary)

Recent theories indicating that traumatic experiences such as child sex abuse (CSA) are processed neurologically as sensorial memories via the limbic area of the brain point to the centrality of engaging the body in healing processes with adult survivors. The present qualitative research study involves five young women from Managua, Nicaragua, all CSA survivors, and considers how practicing trauma-informed yoga (TIY)—a bodyfocused therapy previously unknown in this country—can reduce enduring physical and clinical symptoms and promote positive growth. This stand-alone yoga program was designed in collaboration with a Hatha Yoga instructor, introducing innovations that situate it within the Nicaraguan sociocultural reality and explicitly address the mind-body connection in processes of recovery. Semi-structured interviews were administered at baseline/end of program, and yoga session observations and post-session feedback from the women were gathered at each meeting. The present study identifies the main ongoing CSA-associated symptoms affecting these women as adults and documents the participatory process through which a culturally-rooted TIY program was developed. Findings also focus on the TIY program impacts observed after an 18-week period, including: (1) notable reductions in psychological/physiological symptoms, (2) increased self-acceptance/self-awareness (mindfulness), (3) body reconnection, and (4) improved relationships/affect regulation. These outcomes provide important insights for those working with trauma survivors in Nicaragua and other non-Western settings, suggesting elements to consider in the design of more holistic, comprehensive and culturallyresponsive therapeutic programs for CSA survivors.

Indexing (document details)
School: Universidad Centroamericana (Nicaragua)
School Location: Nicaragua
Source: DAI-A 81/5(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Social research, Behavioral Sciences
Keywords: Child sex abuse, Trauma-informed yoga
Publication Number: 27724580
ISBN: 9781392830529
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