Mindfulness Training for Senior Leaders

Overview

The overarching goal of the project is to investigate if a mindfulness-based attention training (MBAT) program contextualized for Military Senior Leaders (SLs) might benefit SLs in three key domains: (1) cognitive abilities, (2) psychological well-being and self-reported physical health, and (3) strategic leadership skills and ability. The MBAT-SL program will be tested by the training cohorts and compared to the wait-list control cohorts.

Full Title of Study: “Mindfulness Training for U.S. Army Senior Leaders”

Study Type

  • Study Type: Interventional
  • Study Design
    • Allocation: Randomized
    • Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
    • Primary Purpose: Basic Science
    • Masking: None (Open Label)
  • Study Primary Completion Date: February 2026

Interventions

  • Behavioral: Mindfulness-Based Attention Training (MBAT)
    • Pre-recorded weekly sessions for 4 weeks. Each session will consist of approximately 2 hours of video content per week. This video will include MBAT program lectures, pre-recorded testimony from military leaders, and teaching materials.
  • Behavioral: Measuring Mindfulness App (MMA)
    • MMA will provide daily mindfulness practice and takes between 10 to 30 minutes to complete. The MMA can be accessed as an application via a smartphone or a computer.

Arms, Groups and Cohorts

  • Experimental: Cohort A (MT group)
    • Participants will receive 4 weeks of mindfulness training and then followed by 5 months of mindfulness app usage.
  • Active Comparator: Cohort B (Wait-list group)
    • Participants will begin with 4 weeks of no training interval followed by 4-weeks of mindfulness training and then followed by 4 months of mindfulness app usage.

Clinical Trial Outcome Measures

Primary Measures

  • Change in Sustained attention to response task (SART) score
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • The SART involves pressing a button to frequently presented non-target trials (numbers 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9) and withholding the button press to the infrequent target trials (number 3). The participants can have a total score between 0 and 100% with a higher score indicating better sustained attention.

Secondary Measures

  • Change in the Working Memory Task with Affective Distraction (WMDA) score
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • participants are presented with a memory item that they need to memorize and hold in memory during a delay interval. During the delay, emotionally negative or neutral scene images are presented. he participants can have a total score between 0 and 100% with a higher score indicating better working memory.
  • Change in The Attention Control Scale (ATC) scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • ATC is designed to measure two major components of attention (attention focusing and attention shifting). The scores range from 0 to 60, with higher scores indicating greater difficulty in focusing, concentrating and controlling one’s attention.
  • Change in 5FMQ scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Five-Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (5FMQ) is used to assess the five major aspects of mindfulness. The present study will use the 15-item short version. The scores range from 15 to 75, with higher scores indicating greater levels of mindfulness in different aspects of one’s life.
  • Change in PHQ4 scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Patient Health Questionnaire 4 items (PHQ4) is an ultra-brief 4-item measure of depression and anxiety in the general population with the total score ranging from 0 to 12. Higher score indicates higher level of anxiety and depression.
  • Change in PANAS scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Positive and Negative Affect Scale (PANAS) is a widely used self-reported measure of positive and negative affect. The present study will use the 10-item short version with 5-item positive subscale and 5-item negative subscale. The score for each sub-scale ranges from 5 to 25 with higher score indicating higher positive or negative mood, respectively.
  • Change in PSS scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) is a questionnaire measuring the degree to which situations in one’s life are viewed as stressful within the past month. The present study will use the 4-item short version, with the total score ranging from 0 to 16. Higher score indicates higher level of perceived stress.
  • Change in ISI scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) is a self-reported assessment of sleep pattern and quality. The index consists of 7-items and the scores range from 0 to 28, with higher scores indicating severe insomnia.
  • Change in R-UCLA scores
    • Time Frame: baseline, 4-weeks
    • Revised-UCLA Loneliness Scale (R-UCLA) measures one’s perceptions of isolation and satisfaction with one’s social life. This is a shortened 9-item version of the R-UCLA with scores ranging from 9 to 36. Higher scores indicate greater perceived isolation.

Participating in This Clinical Trial

Inclusion Criteria

1. Individuals who are between 18 and 65 years of age. 2. Individuals who are fluent English speakers. 3. Individuals who are active-duty service members 4. Individuals who are willing and able to consent to participate in the study. Exclusion Criteria:

1. Individuals who have been hospitalized for psychological/mental health issues within the last month

Gender Eligibility: All

Minimum Age: 18 Years

Maximum Age: 65 Years

Are Healthy Volunteers Accepted: Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Investigator Details

  • Lead Sponsor
    • University of Miami
  • Collaborator
    • United States Department of Defense
  • Provider of Information About this Clinical Study
    • Principal Investigator: Amishi Jha, Associate Professor – University of Miami
  • Overall Official(s)
    • Amishi Jha, Principal Investigator, University of Miami
  • Overall Contact(s)
    • Ekaterina Denkova, 305-284-8148, exn67@miami.edu

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