We designed the EPYQ to measure, describe, and quantify the objectively observable amount of essential elements of yoga present in yoga interventions. The EPYQ was designed for use by researchers to objectively characterize the yoga session, not the internal experiences of individual practitioners. The development of the EPYQ was funded by the National Institute of Health. (NIH; NCCIH grant #1R01AT006466-01)

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Purpose of the EPYQ

Yoga is a vast and heterogeneous set of practices. This heterogeneity, while reflecting the richness and diversity of yogic approaches, also makes comparison of findings across studies difficult and limits our ability to understand the mechanisms through which yoga therapy affects the mind, body, and overall well-being. To advance understanding of the efficacy of yoga therapy, the EPYQ was developed to quantify and describe the essential dimensions present in yoga interventions. The EPYQ can be used with any style of yoga and across patient or participant populations. This measure will allow yoga interventions research to examine the effects of various dimensions of yoga on well-being and to design more effective interventions for various health problems.

What is the EPYQ?

The EPYQ has two parts. EPYQ part 1 is a 62-item objective measure on how much a yoga instructor mentioned or included various dimensions of yoga in a single yoga class. Response options range from 0 'Not at all' to 4 'A very large amount.' The EPYQ has 14 dimensions:

  1. Acceptance / Compassion
  2. Breathwork
  3. Physicality
  4. Postures (Asanas) – Active
  5. Postures (Asanas) – Restorative
  6. Body Locks (Bandhas)
  7. Body Awareness
  8. Mental & Emotional Awareness / Release
  9. Health Benefits
  10. Individual Attention
  11. Social Aspects
  12. Spirituality
  13. Meditation & Mindfulness
  14. Yoga Philosophy
EPYQ part 2 consists of 27 items describing the structure and specifics of the intervention. This includes a description of the general context and physical space, physicality, facilitation and instruction, and a description of the overall intervention.
EPYQ Chart


Park CL, Elwy AR, Maiya M, Sarkin AJ, Riley K, Eisen SV, Gutierrez I, Finkelstein-Fox L, Lee SY, Casteel DL, Braun T, Groessl EJ. The Essential Properties of Yoga Questionnaire: Psychometric Properties. Int J Yoga Therap. 2018 Mar 2. doi: 10.17761/2018-00016R2. [Epub ahead of print]
Groessl EJ, Maiya M, Elwy AR, Riley K, Sarkin AJ, Eisen SV, Braun T, Gutierrez I, Kidane L, Park CL. The Essential Properties of Yoga Questionnaire: Development and Methods. Int J Yoga Therap. 2015;25(1):51-9.
Elwy AR, Groessl EJ, Eisen SV, Riley K, Maiya M, Lee JP, Sarkin A, Park CL. A Systematic Scoping Review of Yoga Intervention Components and Study Quality. Am J Prev Med. 2014 Aug;47(2):220-32.

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The EPYQ is available for use free of charge by those agreeing to EPYQ User Agreement

EPYQ User Agreement
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