International Journal of Integrated Care, 27 June 2011 - ISSN 1568-4156
Conference abstract
A randomised controlled pilot study of a brief, web-based mindfulness training
Tobias Glück, Program manager, University of Vienna, Dr. Karl-Lueger-Ring 1 1010 Viena, Austria
Andreas Maercker, University of Zurich, Culmannstrasse 8, CH-8091 Zurich, Switzerland
Correspondence to: Tobias Glück, Program manager, University of Vienna, Dr. Karl-Lueger-Ring 1 1010 Viena, Austria, E-mail: tobias.glueck@univie.ac.at
Abstract


Introduction: Two very different approaches, mindfulness—a state of open, non-judgmental awareness and attention towards ones experiences in the present moment—and web-based interventions—a way of delivering various health interventions in a cost efficient, flexible and yet efficacious manner—have been demonstrated to have promising effects on aspects of mental and physical health.


Aims and method: In this randomised-controlled pilot study a 12 sessions (two modules, 6 days, 20 min per day), structured, self-guided web-based mindfulness training, incorporating audio and interactive visual material, was used to evaluate effects on well-being, perceived stress, mindfulness and mood. A two-group design using a wait-list included healthy adults (n=50), aged 20–73, who were recruited over the internet using a large number of e-mails.


Results: Statistical analyses showed significant improvements for mindfulness, distress and negative affect following the training. The training showed to have a long-term impact on these measures, resulting in a further decrease reported in the 3-month follow-up. This study contributes to the growing body of research on mindfulness and web-based interventions alike, showing that a combination of both produces a feasible and promising intervention which could be used for reducing distress in a wider population as well as an adjunct for existing face-to-face and web-based interventions.

Keywords
mindfulness; meditation; training; online; web-based; distress; mood