A Study to evaluate the effects of a Rocking Motion

Study Title:
Rocking chair therapy for dementia patients: Its effect on psychosocial well-being and balance

Study Performed by:
Nancy M. Watson, PhD, RN
School of Nursing, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York

Thelma J. Wells, PhD, RN, FAAN
School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin, Clinical Science Center, Madison, Wisconsin

Christopher Cox, PhD
Department of Biostatistics, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York

Study Conclusion:
The use of platform style rocking chairs to improve psychological well-being and balance of nursing home residents with dementia was studied. Despite significant cognitive impairment, most medically stable unrestrained residents accepted the chairs and learned to actively rock. During the six week program, residents were able to rock an average of 101 minutes per day. Using a cross-over design (n=25), there were improvements in depression/anxiety and reductions in PRN pain medication significantly related to the amount of rocking. Those who liked rocking and wanted to continue it at the end of the study also demonstrated significant improvements in balance as measured by center of gravity.

The full text can be found here: http://cre.sagepub.com/content/25/7/607.full.pdf+html