Relaxation Techniques for Stress Relief

As part of my prototype, I will be showing an example of what the screen will look like when you choose a specific relaxation technique. Instead of using dummy text, I decided to have a look around online for different relaxation techniques that focus on stress or anxiety that I could use as an example.

I came across an article on HelpGuide.org that lists lots of different relaxation techniques for stress relief. You can read the article in full here.

I found a lot of valuable and useful information from this article, including what to do to help you cope with stress, how to find the relaxation technique that suits you best, making the techniques part of your daily life, and lots of different exercises like:  breathing meditation, rhytmic movement, progressive muscle relaxation (which I used in the prototype), body scan meditation, and more.

Here are the steps as well as information about the Progressive Muscle Relaxation technique:

Progressive muscle relaxation involves a two-step process in which you systematically tense and relax different muscle groups in the body.

With regular practice, progressive muscle relaxation gives you an intimate familiarity with what tension—as well as complete relaxation—feels like in different parts of the body. This awareness helps you spot and counteract the first signs of the muscular tension that accompanies stress. And as your body relaxes, so will your mind. You can combine deep breathing with progressive muscle relaxation for an additional level of stress relief.

Progressive muscle relaxation sequence

  1. Right foot, then left foot
  2. Right calf, then left calf
  3. Right thigh, then left thigh
  4. Hips and buttocks
  5. Stomach
  6. Chest
  7. Back
  8. Right arm and hand, then left arm and hand
  9. Neck and shoulders
  10. Face

Before practicing progressive muscle relaxation, consult with your doctor if you have a history of muscle spasms, back problems, or other serious injuries that may be aggravated by tensing muscles.

Most progressive muscle relaxation practitioners start at the feet and work their way up to the face.

  1. Loosen your clothing, take off your shoes, and get comfortable.
  2. Take a few minutes to relax, breathing in and out in slow, deep breaths.
  3. When you’re relaxed and ready to start, shift your attention to your right foot. Take a moment to focus on the way it feels.
  4. Slowly tense the muscles in your right foot, squeezing as tightly as you can. Hold for a count of 10.
  5. Relax your right foot. Focus on the tension flowing away and the way your foot feels as it becomes limp and loose.
  6. Stay in this relaxed state for a moment, breathing deeply and slowly.
  7. When you’re ready, shift your attention to your left foot. Follow the same sequence of muscle tension and release.
  8. Move slowly up through your body, contracting and relaxing the muscle groups as you go.
  9. It may take some practice at first, but try not to tense muscles other than those intended.

I like this technique in particular because it’s different (also something I had never heard of) and it’s a nice way to loosen your muscles during times of stress.

I’ll definitely be referring back to some of these techniques for the final app.

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