Left / Write // Hook: A mixed method study of a writing and boxing workshop for survivors of childhood sexual abuse and trauma
This article investigates how the combination of writing therapy and embodied empowerment, explored through the physical sport of non-contact boxing, can facilitate the recovery journeys of women survivors of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) and their move towards post-traumatic growth. It uses established quantitative psychological measurements and qualitative analytical approaches to examine the impact of an eight-week boxing and writing workshop for female survivors of CSA, called Left/Write//Hook (LWH), on participants’ recovery journeys. The hypothesis was that the LWH workshops would contribute to participants’ recovery and wellbeing. The article reports on the pilot study of the workshops as one aspect of an ongoing research project around LWH which uses concurrent, triangulation mixed methods design to gather and analyze qualitative audio-visual and creative-writing data produced by the women, alongside quantitative psychological assessment data. The findings of qualitative analyses of the participants’ creative writing and the quantitative psychological assessments of the impact of the LWH workshops on participants’ assertiveness, post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, wellbeing, depression, anxiety and stress, along with preliminary findings of filmed material are presented and discussed in this article. The findings supported the hypothesis that the LWH workshops helped facilitate participants’ recovery journeys and supported their wellbeing. This article offers preliminary support for the argument that the dual approach of written/verbal and embodied creativity can enhance the wellbeing of survivors of sexual abuse and trauma.
Copyright (c) 2020 Donna Lyon, Shannon Owen, Dr. Margaret S. Osborne, Dr. Khandis Blake, Bruna Andrades
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