The Africa Yoga Project: A participant-driven concept map of Kenyan teachers' reported experiences
Klein, Jessalyn Emma
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Concept mapping methodology was used to explore the perceived effects of teaching and/or practicing yoga with the Africa Yoga Project (AYP) - a health promotion program that trains and funds Kenyans to teach yoga throughout Kenya. Anecdotal evidence and preliminary qualitative research suggested the AYP meaningfully impacted teachers trained. This study constituted a more in-depth investigation of teachers' experiences. Of the AYP's 72 teachers, 52 and 48 teachers participated in Phases I and II, respectively. Phase I brainstorming resulted in 93 teacher-generated statements about their perceived change. Phase II participants sorted and rated statements in terms of importance. Multidimensional scaling and hierarchical cluster analysis of sort data was used to map and group statements into clusters. Based on statistical and interpretive criteria, a 12-cluster solution with the following concepts was identified as the best model of teachers' change: Identity as a Yoga Teacher; Prosocial Development; Existential Possibility; Genuine Positive Regard; Value and Respect for Others (highest importance); Presence, Acceptance and Competence; Service and Trust; Non-judgment and Emotion Regulation (lowest importance); Engagement and Connection; Interpersonal Effectiveness; Psychosocial Functioning; and Physical Competence and Security. Overall, teachers reported positive perceptions of the AYP. Additional research is needed to quantify teachers' change and compare the AYP outcomes to those of other health promotion programs.