Payne's Handbook of Relaxation Techniques

4th Edition

A Practical Guide for the Health Care Professional


Key Features

  • Each technique is easy to teach and use.
  • Helping the clinician to select the appropriate technique.
  • All the methods are suitable for use with both small groups and individuals.
  • Focuses on the practical aspects of relaxation techniques in relation to patient care.
  • Includes cognitive approaches (e.g., self-awareness, imagery, autogenics, meditation, and positive self-talk).
  • Also includes somatic approaches (e.g., progressive relaxation, stretching and the Mitchell method).
  • Provides ready-to-use schedules and scripts for working with clients.
  • Discusses the pitfalls as well as the benefits of each method.
  • Fully illustrated with both line drawings and photographs.
  • Evidence-based text is supported by up-to-date references.
  • Aimed at all Health Professions practitioners: Manual Therapists, Chiropractors, Physical Therapists, Complementary Therapists, Clinical Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Osteopaths, Naturopaths.

Table of Contents


Preface to the fourth edition

Preface to the first edition


Section 1 Setting the scene


1 Relaxation: What is it?

2 Stress: What is it?

3 Preparing for relaxation

Section 2 Somatic approaches to relaxation

4 Breathing

5 Progressive relaxation

6 Progressive relaxation training

7 A tense-release script

8 Passive muscular relaxation

9 Applied relaxation

10 Behavioural relaxation training

11 The Mitchell method

12 The Alexander technique

13 Differential relaxation

14 Stretchings

15 Physical activity

Section 3 Cognitive approaches

16 Cognitive-behavioural approaches

17 Self-awareness

18 Imagery

19 Goal-directed visualization

20 Autogenic training

21 Meditation

22 Benson’s method

23 Mindfulness-based meditation

24 Brief techniques

Section 4 Working towards best practice

25 Measurement

26 Evidence from research

27 Drawing the threads together

Section 5 Appendices, Glossary, References and Index

Appendix 1 Table of methods and their suggested applications

Appendix 2 Training courses and contact information

Appendix 3 Events and 1995 life change unit (LCU) values for the Recent Life Changes Questionnaire

Appendix 4 PAR-Q Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire





No. of pages:
© 2010
Churchill Livingstone
Print ISBN:
eBook ISBN:

About the authors

Rosemary Payne

Affiliations and Expertise

Chartered physiotherapist and tutor in relaxation training, Cardiff, UK

Marie Donaghy

Edited books include Everett T., Donaghy M.E., Feaver, S 2003 Interventions in Mental Health: An evidence-based approach for Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists Oxford: Butterworth Heinemann. Donaghy M., Nicol M., Davidson K Cognitive Behavioural Interventions in Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy Edinburgh: Elsevier (in print to be published early 2008)

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor of Physiotherapy; Dean, School of Health Sciences, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh; Fellow of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy; Graduate member of the British Psychological Society; Fellow of the Higher Education Academy