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Argentine tango dance compared to mindfulness meditation and a waiting-list control: A randomised trial for treating depression
Complementary Therapies in Medicine
Format: Journal Article
Publication Year: 2012
Pages: 377 - 384
Source ID: shanti-sources-71491
Abstract: ObjectivesTo determine whether tango dancing is as effective as mindfulness meditation in reducing symptoms of psychological stress, anxiety and depression, and in promoting well-being. Design This study employed analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and multiple regression analysis. Participants Ninety-seven people with self-declared depression were randomised into tango dance or mindfulness meditation classes, or to control/waiting-list. Setting classes were conducted in a venue suitable for both activities in the metropolitan area of Sydney, Australia. Interventions Participants completed six-week programmes (1½ h/week of tango or meditation). The outcome measures were assessed at pre-test and post-test. Main outcome measures Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale; The Self Esteem Scale; Satisfaction with Life Scale, and Mindful Attention Awareness Scale. Results Sixty-six participants completed the program and were included in the statistical analysis. Depression levels were significantly reduced in the tango (effect size d = 0.50, p = .010), and meditation groups (effect size d = 0.54, p = .025), relative to waiting-list controls. Stress levels were significantly reduced only in the tango group (effect size d = 0.45, p = .022). Attending tango classes was a significant predictor for the increased levels of mindfulness R2 = .10, adjusted R2 = .07, F (2,59) = 3.42, p = .039. Conclusion Mindfulness-meditation and tango dance could be effective complementary adjuncts for the treatment of depression and/or inclusion in stress management programmes. Subsequent trials are called to explore the therapeutic mechanisms involved.