About Jim and Kimberly Carson
Mindful Yoga Works, LLC sponsors the offerings of Kimberly and Jim Carson who live in the beautiful city of Portland, Oregon. Together, they have dedicated their lives to helping others cultivate peace and joy, and ease suffering with the practices of mindfulness and yoga. From the moment of their wedding vows, they have considered their union as an offering to the unfolding grace of life.
Kimberly Carson, MPH, C-IAYT, E-RYT, is a health educator and yoga therapist specializing in the therapeutic use of yoga and meditation for seniors and people with medical challenges. Kimberly co-developed and taught Mindful Yoga programs being researched at Duke University Medical Center and Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU). Mindful Yoga, as applied in clinical trials of the “Yoga of Awareness” intervention developed by Kimberly and her husband Jim, has been shown in research trials to significantly reduce pain and fatigue in women with metastatic breast cancer, breast cancer survivors, as well as women with fibromyalgia. She lives in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches yoga classes, Mindfulness Breath by Breath, as well as Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction at OHSU’s Knight Cancer Center, Cardiac Rehabilitation, March Wellness and Internal Medicine. Kimberly is currently serving on three large National Institutes of Health (NIH) clinical research trials evaluating yoga and mindfulness interventions in opiod dependent chronic pain patients, metastatic breast cancer patients and MS patients and is the co-author on 25 peer-reviewed articles. She co-directs national yoga teacher training programs focused on health challenges specific to aging as well as cancer and chronic pain at Duke and OHSU. Kimberly is a graduate of yoga teacher training programs at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, Integral Yoga, Yoga of the Heart as taught by Nischala Devi, and iRest. Kimberly, with her colleague Carol Krucoff, currently offers teacher trainings at Duke’s Integrative Medicine Center for yoga teachers interested in teaching older adults. In 2010 based on their research findings, Kimberly and Jim began offering professional trainings at Duke and OHSU focused on integrating Mindful Yoga practices in oncology and persistent pain clinical settings.
Jim Carson, PhD, is a clinical health psychologist and Associate Professor in the Departments of Anesthesiology, and Psychiatry, at Oregon Health & Science University. Prior to becoming a psychologist Jim was a monk (swami) in the yoga tradition and taught meditation world-wide for many years. He has developed a Mindful Pain Management program that he applies extensively with individuals with persistent pain to help them lead more fulfilling lives, including those with cancer, fibromyalgia, chronic back pain, multiple sclerosis, and sickle cell disease. He has also conducted ground-breaking research adapting mindfulness meditation and Mindful Yoga-based approaches to various medical conditions.
Below is a summary of their professional service and programming …
Mindfulness-Based Relationship Enhancement, and Loving-kindness Meditation
Jim and Kimberly Carson together developed the first mindfulness program for couples, Mindfulness-Based Relationship Enhancement (Behavior Therapy, 2004); Journal of Marriage & Family Therapy, 2007). Along with colleagues at Duke, the Carsons also developed the first Loving-kindness Meditation program for medical patients (Journal of Holistic Nursing, 2005, 2006).
In 2000, inspired by the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn, the Carsons began to develop the Mindful Yoga program in the form of an 8-week course called “Yoga of Awareness”. At Duke, research trials with this program have been completed with metastatic breast cancer patients (Journal of Pain & Symptom Management, 2007), and with survivors of early stage breast cancer (Supportive Care in Cancer, 2009). At Oregon Health & Science University a trial investigating the effects of Mindful Yoga training on fibromyalgia patients produced very promising results (initials results published in Pain, 2010; follow-up results published in Clinical Journal of Pain, 2012). For more on Mindful Yoga studies, click here. These trials form the foundation of their professional trainings, Mindful Yoga for Cancer offered at Duke Integrative Medicine and Mindful Yoga for Chronic Pain offered at OHSU.
Mindfulness-based Symptom Management
Recently, the Carsons have created a continuing education program for oncology professionals, Mindfulness-based Symptom Management. This innovative integrative medicine program is designed for all practitioners helping people cope with cancer and its treatment, including physicians, nurses, social workers, psychologists, health coaches, occupational therapists, and naturopaths working with oncology patients (see here for more info). In May 2015, Yoga Therapy Today published a feature article, Yoga as Supportive Care for Healing from Cancer by Jim and Kimberly. This clinical application paper gives an overview of the Mindful Yoga approach when being introduced to cancer patients.
Mindfulness Breath by Breath
Kimberly Carson’s latest offering is Mindfulness Breath by Breath, an ongoing drop-in class that provides a solid introduction to simple and effective stress reduction methods including various breath and mindfulness practices. Classes include adaptive movement, relaxation and mindfulness instruction and practice, and group discussions. This class is being offered free of charge for patients. For more on Mindfulness Breath by Breath, click here.
Mindful Pain Management
Jim Carson has developed a clinical program, Mindful Pain Management, which he offers continuously on an individual basis, and periodically in a group format, at the OHSU Comprehensive Pain Center. For more on on this service, click here.
Nitya Grace and Shankara, Jim and Kimberly’s girl/boy twins, joined the teaching team on 11/11/05. They keep their mommie and papa humble and full of joy.