Effects of relaxation on anxiety in children: Implications for coping with stress

Lynda L. Lamontacne, Karen Rew Mason, Joseph T. Hepworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Although research shows that relaxation has the potential to reduce stress and anxiety in adults, there is little evidence to support this effect in children. This study examined the effects of relaxation on anxiety in 46 second-grade children in two classrooms. A nonequivalent control group design was strengthened by providing relaxation treatment to the control group after the second measure of anxiety. A third measure of anxiety was then given to both classes. The children were not significantly different with respect to sex, age, and initial anxiety. Although the main hypothesis was not supported (at p <.05), a reduction in anxiety resulted for both classes after they completed the program. Subgroup analyses showed a significant treatment effect with the group receiving relaxation exhibiting less anxiety than the control group. This finding indicates that relaxation may be learned by children and may be beneficial in coping with stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)289-292
Number of pages4
JournalNursing research
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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