Effect of Jacobson’s Progressive Muscle Relaxation on Anxiety and Happiness of Older Adults in the Nursing Home

Zahra Asgari Tapeh, Azar Darvishpour, Fereshteh Besharati, Bahare Gholami-Chaboki


Background: Older adults encounter serious psychological challenges in addition to physical problems. Reducing stress and anxiety, along with promoting happiness, is critical to maintaining the mental health of the elderly. Jacobson’s Progressive Muscle Relaxation (JPMR) will lead to peace of mind by relieving physical stress. The present study aimed to investigate the effect of JPMR on the anxiety and happiness of older adults.

Materials and Methods: A single‑group pretest‑posttest design as a type of quasi‑experimental study was conducted on 34 older adults living in a nursing home in Rasht, the north of Iran, in 2021. The intervention was performed one session per week, for 8 weeks. The research instruments included the Geriatric Anxiety Inventory (GAI) and the Oxford Happiness Inventory (OHI). Descriptive statistics and the Wilcoxon test were used for data analysis.

Results: After the intervention, the Mean (Standard Deviation [SD](of anxiety was 4.91 (1.96), and the Mean (SD) (of happiness was 37.18 (7.92). The mean score of anxiety among older adults after the intervention was significantly lower compared to the before intervention (Z = −4.73, p < 0.001). In addition, the mean score of happiness of the samples after the intervention was significantly higher compared to the before intervention (Z = −5.09, p < 0.001).

Conclusions: JPMR has a positive effect on reducing anxiety and promoting happiness in the elderly. Developing training programs and allocating time to non‑pharmacological treatments such as JPMR for the elderly living in nursing homes will help make them happier and healthier.


Aged, anxiety, happiness, nursing homes, progressive muscle relaxation

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