Therapeutic effects of yoga for children: a systematic review of the literature

Pediatr Phys Ther. 2008 Spring;20(1):66-80. doi: 10.1097/PEP.0b013e31815f1208.


Purpose: We completed a systematic review of the literature on the effect of yoga on quality of life and physical outcome measures in the pediatric population. We explored various databases and included case-control and pilot studies, cohort and randomized controlled trials that examined yoga as an exercise intervention for children.

Summary of key points: Using the Sackett levels of evidence, this article reviews the literature on yoga as a complementary mind-body movement therapy. We address the research through three practice patterns according to the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice and provide considerations for the inclusion of yoga into clinical practice.

Statement of conclusions and recommendations for clinical practice: The evidence shows physiological benefits of yoga for the pediatric population that may benefit children through the rehabilitation process, but larger clinical trials, including specific measures of quality of life are necessary to provide definitive evidence.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety / therapy
  • Asthma / therapy
  • Child
  • Depression / therapy
  • Exercise Therapy* / methods
  • Humans
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Yoga*