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The Effect of Mechanical Massage and Mental Training on Heart Rate Variability and Cortisol in Swedish Employees: A Randomized Explorative Pilot Study
Department of Clinical, Neuro and Developmental Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands.
University of Skövde, School of Health Sciences. University of Skövde, Digital Health Research (DHEAR). Department of Clinical, Neuro and Developmental Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Kvinna, barn, ungdom och familj (WomFam), Woman, Child, Youth and Family)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2015-4819
University of Skövde, School of Health Sciences. University of Skövde, Digital Health Research (DHEAR). (Individ och Samhälle (VIDSOC), Individual and Society)
Section of Anthrozoology and Applied Ethology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4902-839X
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2020 (English)In: Frontiers In Public Health, ISSN 2296-2565, Vol. 8, article id 82Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Work-related stress is relatively common in modern society and is a major cause of sick-leave. Thus, effective stress reducing interventions are needed. This study examined the effects of mental training and mechanical massage, on employee's heart rate variability (HRV) and plasma cortisol at their workplaces. Moreover, it was investigated whether baseline systolic blood pressure (SBP) can explain differences in effectiveness of the intervention. Ninety-three participants from four workplaces were randomly assigned to one of the five programs: (I) Mechanical massage and mental training combined, II) Mechanical massage, III) Mental training, IV) Pause, or V) Control. HRV and plasma cortisol were measured at baseline and after 4 and 8 weeks. SBP was measured at baseline. On the reduction of cortisol levels, a small effect of the mechanical massage program was found, whereas no effect was found for the other programs. None of the programs showed any effect on HRV. Nonetheless, when the level of systolic blood pressure was taken into account, some small beneficial effects on HRV and cortisol of mental training and the mechanical massage were found. This exploratory pilot-study provides useful information for future studies that aim to reduce stress among employees. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Frontiers Media S.A., 2020. Vol. 8, article id 82
Keywords [en]
cortisol, heart rate variability, mechanical massage, mental training, stress, systolic blood pressure
National Category
Cardiac and Cardiovascular Systems Occupational Health and Environmental Health Nursing
Research subject
Individual and Society VIDSOC; Translational Medicine TRIM; Woman, Child and Family (WomFam)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:his:diva-18403DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2020.00082ISI: 000525723900001PubMedID: 32266197Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85083229887OAI: oai:DiVA.org:his-18403DiVA, id: diva2:1426141
Note

Stavning i artikeln: Jasmin Müller

Available from: 2020-04-23 Created: 2020-04-23 Last updated: 2020-05-05

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Huizink, Anja C.Muller, JasminUvnäs-Moberg, KerstinHandlin, Linda

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