MINDFULGym Methodology

Describing MINDFULGym In Research


This is how the MINDFULGym intervention program can be described for research purpose:



  • MINDFULGym is a group mindfulness-based program developed by consultant psychiatrist Dr. Phang Cheng Kar in 2010 for the Malaysian community. It was developed in consideration of the multi-ethnic and multi-religious needs of Malaysians who wish to learn mindfulness in a secular approach.



  • The full program is conducted over a period of 5 weeks with 1 session per week (2-3 hours per session) and daily home practice (supported by audio-guided instructions in compact disc and WhatsApp mobile messaging app). The sessions are conducted in a group of 15-20 participants using a psycho-educational and experiential approach to ensure maximum learning and benefits.



  • Being the first evidence-based mindfulness program in Malaysia, it has been shown to reduce psychological distress and improve emotional well-being among medical students (Phang, Chiang, Ng, Keng, & Oei, 2015; Phang, Firdaus, Normala, Keng, & Sherina, 2015a; Phang, Firdaus, Normala, Keng, & Sherina, 2015b; Keng, Phang, & Oei, 2015), critical care nurses (Hee, Norsiah, Pathmawathi, & Phang, 2013), school teachers (Gnanavisuddhi, 2015), cancer patients (Woo, 2016), and general adults in the community (Ng, Ting, & Phang, 2015).



  • Compared to the Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) programs, MINDFULGym is a) shorter in duration (5 instead of 8 weeks); b) includes the use stories (e.g. ‘A Better Tomorrow Chocolate’), games (e.g. blowing bubbles), and songs (e.g. 'Happiness is Here-and-Now') for teaching mindfulness in more fun ways; c) has more traditional mindfulness related and ‘meta-mindfulness’ (Phang & Oei, 2012) practice (e.g. mindful walking, grateful thinking, appreciative joy); d) does not include Yoga practice (as it is not culturally appropriate for some people in Malaysia); and e) recommends simpler and shorter daily home practice (typically not more than 5-10 minutes per day).



  • In the MINDFULGym program, being mindful is defined as 'remembering to pay attention to the present moment with an attitude of kindness, a beginner's mind, and wisdom.'  The MINDFULGym's training slogan is "Be Present, Be Calm & Be Grateful" and 'Mindful-S.T.O.P.' (available in mini, basic, and add-on versions) is the main psychological tool taught for cultivating mindfulness (Phang, Keng, & Chiang, 2014).






For a brief description of the various MINDFULGym practice,

please refer to the 12 MINDFULGym Tools.



For a detail description of the various MINDFULGym practice,

please refer to the MINDFULGym Book.