Infant and Children's Massage and Nurturing Touch BLOG

Idibidi Kids BLOG page contains information on infant and children's massage, helpful massage tips and techniques, articles and more. Idibidi Kids likes to support charities and not-for-profit organisations, particularly those associated with babies and children. Idibidi Kids blog page is also about raising awareness of infant massage to the community and promoting the benefits of infant massage and children's massage, both for the parent/carer and the child. Please visit

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Children with ADHD & ADD and Massage

Do you have a child with ADHD/ADD?
As a parent or carer of an ADHD/ADD child, do you massage your child and have noticed any improvement or perceived benefits?

a)I am currently researching into the benefits of the parent/carer massaging their child with ADD/ADHD, combining this with research studies to write an article/research paper. I would like to document the benefits in particular that parents/carers have noticed.
b) Would you like to learn how to massage your child? If you have a child with ADHD/ADD, Natalie invites you participate in a 4 session parent-child massage course.

Please contact Natalie 0411615641 or email

Your privacy is respected, your real names/child's name will not be published.

Here is an excerpt from commenting on the Touch Research Institute's findings of massage for ADHD children

Massage for ADHDTwo recent studies conducted by the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami reported that regular massage therapy can be an effective treatment for kids with ADHD. One study found adolescent boys who received ten 15-minute daily massages were observed by their teachers to be more focused in their schoolwork, and they fidgeted less. In addition, the children rated themselves as happier than those who participated in a relaxation therapy program.

Another study involved kids aged 7-18, 20 percent of whom were girls. Each subject received a 20-minute massage twice a week. They showed immediate improvement in their moods and longer-term behavioral improvement in the classroom. They also reported feeling happier and their teachers found them to be more attentive.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Field, T., Quintino, O., Hernandez-Reif, M. & Koslovsky, G. (1998). Adolescents with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder benefit from massage therapy. Adolescence, 33, 103-108.

METHOD: Twenty-eight adolescents with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder were provided either massage therapy or relaxation therapy for 10 consecutive school days. RESULTS: The massage therapy group, but not the relaxation therapy group, rated themselves as happier and observers rated them as fidgeting less following the sessions. After the 2-week period, their teachers reported more time on task and assigned them lower hyperactivity scores based on classroom behavior.


Khilnani, S., Field, T., Hernandez-Reif, M., & Schanberg, S. (2003). Massage therapy improves mood and behavior of students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Adolescence, 38, 623-38.

METHOD: The present study involved 30 children and adolescents between the ages of 7 and 18 (M = 13) diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The children were randomly assigned to a wait-list control and a massage group. The latter group received massage therapy for 20 minutes twice per week over the course of one month. RESULTS: Mood state improved for the massage but not the control group based on smiley face and thermometer scales. The massage group also improved in classroom behavior in the areas of the Conners Teacher Rating Scales on anxiety, daydreaming and hyperactivity. The wait-list control group did not show these gains. In sum, the results revealed that massage therapy benefited children and adolescents with ADHD by improving short-term mood state and longer-term classroom behavior.

How is massage able to assist your child with ADHD/ADD?

Research shows that massage may help your child:
• improve concentration and ability to remain focussed
• calmer disposition
• reduce stress in the body
• improve classroom behaviour

by calming the nervous system and reducing the stress hormone 'cortisol'.

A little about myself:
Natalie is the West Australian state rep. for the International Assoc of Infant Massage (IAIM), certified infant massage instructor, massage in schools instructor, mum of 2 boys, researcher and avid reader. Her background is predominantly in science and R&D (research and development). Natalie has obtained an Assoc. Dip Science, Cert I Aromatherapy and is currently studying a Child Psychology module.
She is passionate about teaching infant and kids massage to parents and caregivers and raising awareness of the benefits of massage for children. Natalie lives in the northern suburbs of Perth, West Australia. Natalie's website is


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