Benefits of Foot and Hand Massage

If you’ve enjoyed a hand or foot massage then you know that it can be a very calming, soothing and beneficial experience. We look at four published research studies that support anecdotal evidence. And you can find out more in my book: Hand and Foot Massage. 

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Research into Benefits of Massage

Please click on the headings to get more information of the individual studies and references.

Hand and Foot Massage Provide Consolation

Receiving soothing massages for 8 weeks after the death of a loved one can provide much-needed consolation and help diminish feelings of loneliness, according to this study. “Massage activates touch receptors which then release oxytocin, a hormone known for its positive effects on well-being and relaxation,” explains Dr Cronfalk, who conducted the research with colleagues from the Karolinska Institutet.


Hand and Foot Massage for Pain Relief

This study focused on hand and foot massage as an intervention in post-operative pain. The conclusion was that foot and hand massage appears to be an effective, inexpensive, low-risk, flexible and easily applied strategy for postoperative pain management.

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Foot Massage in Critical Care

Foot massage was introduced as a relaxation strategy in the stressful environment of critical care. Critically ill patients in intensive care were offered a soothing five-minute foot massage. A significant decrease in heart rate, blood pressure and respirations was observed during the foot massage intervention.

Mary Atkinson Foot Massage


Massage for Nursing Home Residents

Hand massage can bring comfort and encourage communication between caregivers and residents in a nursing home. This study looks at how the valuable role that massage can play as part of residents’ care.

Mary and Takiko working


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