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Effectiveness of manual therapies: the UK evidence report:
“Conclusions:... Massage is effective in adults for chronic low back pain and chronic neck pain....”
A Review of the Evidence for the Effectiveness, Safety, and Cost of Acupuncture, Massage Therapy, and Spinal Manipulation for Back Pain:
“Conclusions: Initial studies have found massage to be effective for persistent back pain..... Preliminary evidence suggests that massage, but not acupuncture or spinal manipulation, may reduce the costs of care after an initial course of therapy”
Field, Ironson, Pickens et al. (1996). Massage therapy reduces anxiety and enhances EEG pattern of alertness and math computations. International Journal of Neuroscience 86, 197-205
Research indicates that a 15-minute chair massage results in decreased stress, increased alertness and increased speed & accuracy on math computations.
Office workers massaged regularly were more alert, performed better and were less stressed than those who weren't massaged.
Occupational Health and Safety news and the National Council on compensation Insurance (U.S.A.)
Up to 90% of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related complaints.
Stress accounts for $26 billion in medical and disability payments and $95 billion in lost productivity per year.
Over 50% of lost work days are stress related.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Health care expenditures are nearly 50% greater for workers who report high levels of stress.
American Institute of Stress
40% of job turnover is due to stress.
Participation – 99% of your employees will take part in a chair massage program, study after study have shown this to be true.
Cost – Chair massage is often cheaper than providing free coffee or soda and healthier, from as little as $13 per employee.
Effectiveness – Same day results that last for weeks. See below for a complete look at the benefits of a corporate chair massage program for your office or company.
Even a brief chair massage visit can significantly improve employee problem solving abilities.
A recent study in American Psychologist gave one group of workers a 15 minute rest, and another, a 15 minute massage. The group that received the massage performed significantly better on complicated tasks like math problems. Massage also improves creative thinking and relieves fatigue. It’s better than a cup of coffee!
In addition, by lowering stress, massage helps eliminate absenteeism, making your team more competitive. “Massage addressed the symptoms of stress,” says Bruce Kelly, a consultant with William M. Mercer, the benefits firm, about massage at one company. “It offers people relief and helps them perform better.”
The number of companies that offer massage to lower stress and improve productivity is growing every year. So, do such people-friendly policies result in higher revenues? You bet, says Fortune Magazine. In fact, Eddie Bauer, one of Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For, provides on-site massage twice a week at corporate headquarters.
(based in US)
An American Study, recently published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, looked at the “feasibility of chair massage during the work hours of nurses in inpatient and outpatient settings and its effect on stress-related symptoms.” Thirty-eight nurses, ranging in age from 21 to 65 years, each received a 15 minute chair massage once a week for ten weeks. These treatments were specifically tailored by three massage therapists to suit the individual’s needs.
The participants were assessed at five and then ten weeks for overall quality of life, levels of stress, anxiety, and symptoms relating to anxiety. The results demonstrated that stress and anxiety related symptoms improved for all 38 participants at five weeks and further at ten weeks. Those nurses working a 12 hour shift (rather than those working 8 hour shifts) reported considerable benefits from massages between week five and week ten. Thirty-five of the 38 participants (92%) gave positive feedback about chair massage in relation to improved sleep, a reduction in pain, headaches, tension and stress. 70% felt it had improved their overall job satisfaction, and 60% suggested they would be willing to pay for short chair massage sessions if these were made available in the workplace.
The researchers concluded that “offering chair massage for nurses in a psychiatric unit or a pain rehabilitation unit during work hours – although challenging because of busy clinical schedules – reduced stress-related symptoms significantly and was highly appreciated by the nurses.” (Source: International Therapist Magazine, Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT). Issue 103 January 2013)
This study assessed feasibility and effect of weekly, 15-min chair massages during work for 38 nurses. Mean Perceived Stress Scale-14 (PSS-14), Smith Anxiety Scale (SAS), linear analog self-assessment scale (LASA), and symptom visual analog scale (SX-VAS) scores were tracked at baseline, 5 weeks, and 10 weeks. Of 400 available massage appointments, 329 were used. At 10 weeks, mean PSS-14 score decreased from 17.85 to 14.92 (P = .002); mean SAS score, from 49.45 to 40.95 (P < .001). Mean LASA score increased from 42.39 to 44.84 (P = .006); mean SX-VAS score, from 65.03 to 74.47 (P < .001). Massages for nurses during work hours reduced stress-related symptoms.
Stress on or off the job costs U.S. workplaces and estimated $200 billion a year in reduced productivity, accidents, compensation claims, absenteeism, employee turnover, heath insurance and medical expenses. This cost amounts to more than the after-tax profits of Fortune 500 companies and more than 10 times the cost of ALL strikes combined. Recent studies have shown:
Up to 80% of industrial accidents are due to stress
14% of workers say stress caused them to quit or change jobs in the previous two years
Workers’ compensation awards for job stress threaten to bankrupt the system in some states
“Employee Burnout: America’s Newest Epidemic” (Northwestern National Life); “Job Stess: The 20th Century Disease” (UN National Labor Organization); “Mitchum Report on Stress in the 90′s.”
A fast paced work environment with high demands, little chance of relief and limited control, characterize “high-stress occupations”. Recent studies reported work-related stress rates of 30 to 46 percent. In a study of 28,000 workers in 215 different organizations, Kohler and Kamp reported that stress at work was associated with employee burnout, acute and chronic health problems, and poor work performance. In this California study, on-site massage helped to maintain employee’s job satisfaction and more, while control-group job satisfaction diminished., University of California, Davis – Medical Center
✔ Many companies, (e.g.. GE, Goldman Sachs, Young & Rubicam, and American Airlines) are inviting massage therapists on-site as an employee perk and as a means of reducing stress and absenteeism.
“Pressing the Flesh”, New York 31 (1): 36-40, January 12, 1998
✔ At Boeing and Reebok, headaches, back strain, and fatigue have all fallen since the companies started bringing in massage therapists… Doctors are prescribing massage to help patients manage stress and pain.
“The Magic of Touch”, Newsweek, April 6, 1998
✔ More than 80 companies, including many Fortune 500 companies, are using massage therapy to counter such ills as musculoskeletal problems, stress, and poor ergonomic design of furniture.
“Alternative Medicine Moves Into the Workplace”, Alternative Therapies 2(1): 47-51, January, 1996
✔ By including 15 minutes of free massage therapy once each week, the Calvert Group, an investment firm in Bethesda, MD, reduced it’s turnover rate to 5 percent in an industry where the norm is 20 percent.
HR Focus, September, 1997: 1-3
✔ A growing number of businesses and organizations offer massage in the workplace, including the US Department of Justice.
“The Magic of Touch”, Life Magazine, August, 1997: 52-62
✔ On-Site massage is cheaper than vacation and childcare. On-Site massage reduces work- related stress, improves alertness, performance and productivity, and even keeps people feeling well enough to stay at work when they would rather go home.
Crain’s Chicago Business, February, 1999
✔ Employees that receive massage work as part of a corporate wellness program feel less stress, are more productive on the job and are less likely to take unplanned time off from work.
HR Magazine, October, 1998