Trends in Yoga, Tai Chi, and Qigong Use Among US Adults, 2002-2017

Am J Public Health. 2019 May;109(5):755-761. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2019.304998. Epub 2019 Mar 21.


Objectives: To examine the characteristics and temporal trends of yoga, tai chi, and qigong (YTQ) use among US adults.

Methods: Using the 2002, 2007, 2012, and 2017 National Health Interview Surveys, we examined the prevalence, patterns, and predicting factors of YTQ use by Taylor series linear regression, the Wald F χ2 test, and multivariable logistic regression models (n = 116 404).

Results: YTQ use increased from 5.8% in 2002 to 14.5% in 2017 (P ≤ .001). Only 6.6% of YTQ users were referred by their medical doctors, and approximately one third disclosed their use of YTQ to medical professionals. Reasons for using YTQ included (1) YTQ was beneficial, (2) YTQ focused on the whole person, and (3) YTQ was natural. Acute and chronic pain, arthritis, and depression were the top 3 medical conditions for which people used YTQ the most.

Conclusions: YTQ use is increasing substantially, mainly because of its natural and holistic healing approach toward health and chronic diseases. Future studies aiming to explore how to best integrate YTQ into the current health care system are warranted.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arthritis / therapy*
  • Chronic Pain / therapy*
  • Depression / therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Qigong / trends*
  • Tai Ji / trends*
  • Yoga*