Effect of Progressive Muscle Relaxation on DASS Score and Reaction Time


  • Anitha O.R.1 , Umadevi B.1, Christofer Thomas2




Stress, Reaction time, Progressive muscle relaxation, DASS Score.


Background: Reaction time is a reliable indicator of rate of processing of sensory stimuli by central nervous

system and its execution in the form of motor response. It is found to be affected by factors like physiological

stress, mood and diseases like neuropathy & nerve injury. Various relaxation interventions have shown to

reduce stress, but there are fewer reports about the effect of progressive muscle relaxation on stress and

reaction time.

Objective: The present investigation was undertaken to study the effect of progressive muscle relaxation on

visual and auditory reaction times (RTs) & on Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS) Score.

Method: 66 students who had moderate to severe stress & who met the inclusion & exclusion criteria were

enrolled in the study and were randomly divided into 2 groups- subjects & controls. 33 subjects were given

progressive muscle relaxation training daily for 6 weeks. DASS score, visual & auditory reaction time were

recorded before & after the training period. The readings were compared within the group & also with the

age matched 33 controls who did not receive Progressive muscle relaxation training.

Results & Interpretation: In the study group, there was decrease in the DASS score after the training.

There was a significant decrease (P< 0.001) in visual RT (from 255.4 ± 58.0ms to 208.6 ± 37.8ms) as well

as auditory RT (from 225.2 ± 061.4ms to 187.9 ± 038.5ms). whereas the change in reaction time & DASS

score was not significant in the control group.

Conclusion: Decrease in DASS Score & reduction in reaction times following progressive muscle relaxation

technique, shows that it is a very effective tool in decreasing the stress levels in individuals. Progressive

muscle relaxation is an easy and inexpensive method as it may help students to concentrate better & excel

in their studies.

Author Biography

Anitha O.R.1 , Umadevi B.1, Christofer Thomas2

1 Associate Professor, 2Assistant. Professor, Dept. of Physiology,

Sapthagiri Institute of Medical Sciences & Research Centre



How to Cite

Anitha O.R.1 , Umadevi B.1, Christofer Thomas2. (2020). Effect of Progressive Muscle Relaxation on DASS Score and Reaction Time. International Journal of Physiology, 8(3), 17-23. https://doi.org/10.37506/ijop.v8i3.1323