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Subsurface Confinement: Evidence from Submariners of the Benefits of Mindfulness

Abstract : ObjectivesThe subsurface ballistic missile nuclear submarine (SSBN) is an extreme professional environment in which personnel are both isolated and confined during patrols, which can last longer than 2 months. This environment is known to degrade submariners’ mood and cognition.MethodsThis exploratory, empirical study followed a cohort of 24 volunteer submariners. Dispositional mindfulness was assessed with the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory, in order to identify two groups (mindful and non-mindful) and compare change in emotional state, interoception, and health behaviors during the patrol.ResultsOverall, psychological health deteriorated during the patrol. However, mindful submariners demonstrated better psychological adaptation and interoception than the non-mindful group. This was associated with better subjective health behaviors (sleeping and eating).ConclusionsDispositional mindfulness appears to protect against the negative effects of long-term containment in a professional environment, such as a submarine patrol. Our work highlights that mindfulness may help individuals to cope with stress in such situations. Developing mindfulness could also be an important preventive healthcare measure during quarantine imposed by the outbreak of a serious infectious disease.
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Contributor : Charles Martin-Krumm Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Sunday, July 18, 2021 - 5:28:05 PM
Last modification on : Sunday, June 26, 2022 - 3:11:01 AM

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Charlotte Aufauvre-Poupon, Charles Martin-Krumm, Anais Duffaud, Adrien Lafontaine, Lionel Gibert, et al.. Subsurface Confinement: Evidence from Submariners of the Benefits of Mindfulness. Mindfulness, Springer, 2021, pp.2218-2228. ⟨10.1007/s12671-021-01677-7⟩. ⟨hal-03289762⟩



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