Can the Mindful Awareness and Resilience Skills for Adolescents (MARS-A) Program Be Provided Online? Voices from the Youth
2. Materials and Methods
3.1. Creating a Safe Space
- In-person participant (IPP): […] it felt like a really safe space. Like it felt like you could really say whatever was on your mind.
- IPP: […] you could say what you need to say, so like, afterwards if you’re like stressed out about something then no one will like, judge you or make a comment…
- EHealth participant (EHP): I felt like it was a very safe environment… I felt like they were very welcoming, and it was comforting.
- EHP: […] they made you feel like whatever you were feeling was like OK […] Like, anytime I thought of something, I shared.
3.2. Fostering Peer Support and Connection
- IPP: […] you get to see like, other teens—what they’re going through and stuff [...] I thought it was really useful.
- IPP: […] then we started to get to know each other and like before the sessions started, or like when it ended we would talk to each other afterwards.
- EHP: […] it was really interesting to hear the other kids and what they were saying […] because I could relate to it, and I just didn’t expect other people to be going through the same thing as me…
- EHP: I liked how I was able to interact with other people… other people who are in similar situations as me
3.3. Integration of Mindfulness Skills into Daily Life
- IPP: I liked how we could always learn new practices every week. And I feel like being able to try the practices out at school really helped.
- IPP: I liked the eating [practice] one too, because I could fit that into my daily life.
- EHP: I’m working and in the process of forgiving a bunch of people in my life, […] so I definitely think that’s going to be a helpful thing.
- EHP: I liked the techniques that I learned, the different kind of mindfulness things we went through because I use them throughout the day all the time.
3.4. Improved Well-Being through the Application of Mindfulness
- IPP: I feel like I’m less anxious about stuff and I feel a little bit happier about stuff now.
- IPP: I know that a couple times my stress level was a little bit lower which was helpful […] like my sleeping patterns were consistent.
- EHP: I think the most useful part was how the program helps you cope with a lot of different things […] it just helps you cope all around.
- EHP: I don’t know what it is with the body scan, but it helps me go to sleep.
Conflicts of Interest
|Participant ID: ________|
|Start Time: _________ AM/PM End Time: __________ AM/PM|
- What did you like the most about the program?Probe: What were some of the good things that came out of the mindfulness sessions?
- What did you like the least about the program?Probes: Were there some parts of the program that you didn’t like? Why? What ways could we improve on those parts?
- What was the most useful part of the program for you?Probes: Are there some things that you learned the program that you think you will use in the future?
- What did you think of the teens in your group?Probes: Did you enjoy being part of a group? If so, how or in what way? Was the size of the group too large/small? Did you find that you had enough/too much time to share your experience?
- (For participants in the eHealth arm) What did you think of the iMeet platform? Probes: What issues, if any, did you have with the iMeet platform? What did you like/dislike about doing the program at home? Online/remotely?
- How did you find your instructors?Probes: Is there something that your instructors could have done differently? What did you like/dislike about your instructors?
- Did you practice mindfulness between the sessions? If yes, approximately how many times a week did you practice and for how long? If no, why not?Probe: What made it easy/difficult to practice at home? What were the barriers to home practice?
- (If yes at the previous question) Which mindfulness practices did you do at home? Why did you choose this/these practice(s)?
- What changes, if any, did you see in yourself after finishing the mindfulness program?Probes: Better sleep, feeling happier, more energy, less anxious/stressed, less pain, increased school/social event attendance
- Would you recommend the mindfulness program to a friend or to another young person with a health condition?Probes: If no, why not? If yes, why would you recommend it?
- Do you think that you will continue to practice mindfulness? Why or Why not?
- Do you have any other comments that you would like to share with us about the program?Probes: positive/negative experiences? General thoughts and feelings about program?
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|Parameters||In-Person Group (n = 9)||Online Group (n = 9)|
|Average age (range)||15.2 (13–17)||15.4 (13–18)|
|Primary diagnosis (%)|
|Somatic symptom disorder||11||11|
|Juvenile idiopathic arthritis||0||11|
|Chronic pain (%)||44||44|
|Sleep difficulties (%)||67||78|
|Mental health (%)|
|Any mental health diagnosis||89||78|
|History of suicidal ideation||33||33|
|Other mental health diagnosis||33||22|
|Currently taking medication (%)||67||89|
|Substance use (past month) (%)|
|Smoking/vaping (last month)||0||11|
|Alcohol (last month)||0||33|
|Past yoga/tai chi experience (%)||78||67|
|Previous meditation/mindfulness experience||44||44|
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Chadi, N.; Weisbaum, E.; Malboeuf-Hurtubise, C.; Ahola Kohut, S.; Viner, C.; Kaufman, M.; Locke, J.; Vo, D.X. Can the Mindful Awareness and Resilience Skills for Adolescents (MARS-A) Program Be Provided Online? Voices from the Youth. Children 2018, 5, 115. https://doi.org/10.3390/children5090115
Chadi N, Weisbaum E, Malboeuf-Hurtubise C, Ahola Kohut S, Viner C, Kaufman M, Locke J, Vo DX. Can the Mindful Awareness and Resilience Skills for Adolescents (MARS-A) Program Be Provided Online? Voices from the Youth. Children. 2018; 5(9):115. https://doi.org/10.3390/children5090115Chicago/Turabian Style
Chadi, Nicholas, Elli Weisbaum, Catherine Malboeuf-Hurtubise, Sara Ahola Kohut, Christine Viner, Miriam Kaufman, Jake Locke, and Dzung X. Vo. 2018. "Can the Mindful Awareness and Resilience Skills for Adolescents (MARS-A) Program Be Provided Online? Voices from the Youth" Children 5, no. 9: 115. https://doi.org/10.3390/children5090115