Yoga Research > Basic Research > Yoga in Society

Yoga in Society prevalence of practice, demographics and characteristics, reasons for practice, barriers to practice, practice frequency, styles of yoga, adverse events, public and practitioner perceptions of yoga, etc.

Yoga in Society

Below is a list of citations of research articles published in peer-reviewed biomedical journals relevant to the topic on this page. There are two types of citations:

  1. Citations for review, summary, and scientific/clinical hypothesis papers that summarize and analyze the yoga research in this specific area; these are the best resource for becoming familiar with the literature;
  2. Citations of individual study publications that are notable from a historical, scientific, mechanistic, clinical, sociological, epidemiological, philosophical, and/or policy aspect.

Links for many of these citations will take you to the full-text of the publication. Otherwise, in the case of publications copyrighted by the journal, links will take you to abstracts of the publications, and you then can acquire the full text articles by purchasing them directly from the journal, by obtaining free access through a medical library that subscribes to the journal, or by directly requesting them from the corresponding author via email.

Notable Publications

Yoga and body image: Findings from a large population-based study of young adults.
Neumark-Sztainer D, MacLehose RF, Watts AW, Pacanowski CR, Eisenberg ME.
Body Image. 2018 Mar;24:69-75.
[ full text ]

Downward dog becomes fit body, inc.: A content analysis of 40 years of female cover images of Yoga Journal.
Webb JB, Vinoski ER, Warren-Findlow J, Burrell MI, Putz DY.
Body Image. 2017 Sep;22:129-135.
[ abstract ]

Characteristics of Yoga Practitioners, Motivators, and Yoga Techniques of Choice: A Cross-sectional Study.
Telles S, Sharma SK, Singh N, Balkrishna A.
Front Public Health. 2017 Jul 27;5:184.
[ full text ]

Is the "Yoga Bod" the new skinny?: A comparative content analysis of mainstream yoga lifestyle magazine covers.
Webb JB, Vinoski ER, Warren-Findlow J, Padro MP, Burris EN, Suddreth EM.
Body Image. 2017 Mar;20:87-98.
[ abstract ]

Why practice yoga? Practitioners' motivations for adopting and maintaining yoga practice.
Park CL, Riley KE, Bedesin E, Stewart VM.
J Health Psychol. 2016 Jun;21(6):887-96.
[ abstract ]

Practitioners' perceptions of yoga's positive and negative effects: Results of a National United States survey.
Park CL, Riley KE, Braun TD.
J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2016 Apr;20(2):270-9.
[ abstract ]

Prevalence, Patterns, and Predictors of Yoga Use: Results of a U.S. Nationally Representative Survey.
Cramer H, Ward L, Steel A, Lauche R, Dobos G, Zhang Y.
Am J Prev Med. 2016 Feb;50(2):230-5.
[ abstract ]

Improving access to yoga: barriers to and motivators for practice among health professions students.
Brems C, Justice L, Sulenes K, Girasa L, Ray J, Davis M, Freitas J, Shean M, Colgan D.
Adv Mind Body Med. 2015 Summer;29(3):6-13.
[ abstract ]

A large-scale survey of adverse events experienced in yoga classes.
Matsushita T, Oka T.
Biopsychosoc Med. 2015 Mar 18;9:9.
[ full text ]

Engagement in mindfulness practices by U.S. adults: sociodemographic barriers.
Olano HA, Kachan D, Tannenbaum SL, Mehta A, Annane D, Lee DJ.
J Altern Complement Med. 2015 Feb;21(2):100-2. doi: 10.1089/acm.2014.0269.
[ full text ]

Yoga practice in England 1997-2008: prevalence, temporal trends, and correlates of participation.
Ding D, Stamatakis E.
BMC Res Notes. 2014 Mar 24;7:172.
[ full text ]

Yoga in the Real World: Perceptions, Motivators, Barriers, and patterns of Use.
Quilty MT, Saper RB, Goldstein R, Khalsa SB.
Glob Adv Health Med. 2013 Jan;2(1):44-9.
[ full text ]

Yoga in Australia: Results of a national survey.
Penman S, Cohen M, Stevens P, Jackson S.
Int J Yoga. 2012 Jul;5(2):92-101.
[ full text ]

For questions related to yoga research, email us at

Yoga Alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)(6). Yoga Alliance Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3). This website refers to the two organizations as "Yoga Alliance." Copyright 2019 Yoga Alliance. Yoga Alliance, the Yoga Alliance logo, RYS, RYT, and YACEP are registered marks with the USPTO and other jurisdictions.
Copyright 2020 by Yoga Alliance