New research suggests the key to improving your partner’s wellbeing could lie in your capable hands.
But don’t get any funny ideas; we’re talking about a good old-fashioned massage (although, depending on the funny idea, that might also work.)
A study carried out by Sayuri Naruse and Dr. Mark Moss from Northumbria University found that a simple massage can vastly improve your partner’s physical and emotional wellbeing – even if you’re no expert in the art of backrubs.
The researchers studied couples participating in a three-week massage course. Their wellbeing was analyzed via questionnaires before and after backrub sessions, including questions meant to gauge their physical and mental wellbeing, stress and relationship satisfaction.
Researchers found that the couples’ overall wellbeing, stress levels and coping abilities were all positively impacted by the massage class. Somewhat surprisingly, the satisfaction levels were identical whether a person was giving or receiving a massage, with 91 percent of the couples saying they would recommend mutual backrubs to their friends.
“The benefits of receiving a massage from a professional are well documented,” said Naruse. “But this research shows how a similar outcome can be obtained by couples with little prior training and experience of the activity.”
Since past research has found that couples tend to handle stress as a combined force, massages might also help with relationship stability, said the researchers.
All this to say: get rubbing.
h/t The Independent