A Randomised Controlled Single-Blind Trial of the Efficacy of Reiki at Benefitting Mood and Well-Being

Bowden, Deborah; Goddard, Lorna and Gruzelier, John. 2011. A Randomised Controlled Single-Blind Trial of the Efficacy of Reiki at Benefitting Mood and Well-Being. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2011, pp. 1-8. ISSN 1741-427X [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This is a constructive replication of a previous trial conducted by Bowden et al. (2010), where students who had received Reiki demonstrated greater health and mood benefits than those who received no Reiki. The current study examined impact on anxiety/depression. 40 university students—half with high depression and/or anxiety and half with low depression and/or anxiety—were randomly assigned to receive Reiki or to a non-Reiki control group. Participants experienced six 30-minute sessions over a period of two to eight weeks, where they were blind to whether noncontact Reiki was administered as their attention was absorbed in a guided relaxation. The efficacy of the intervention was assessed pre-post intervention and at five-week follow-up by self-report measures of mood, illness symptoms, and sleep. The participants with high anxiety and/or depression who received Reiki showed a progressive improvement in overall mood, which was significantly better at five-week follow-up, while no change was seen in the controls. While the Reiki group did not demonstrate the comparatively greater reduction in symptoms of illness seen in our earlier study, the findings of both studies suggest that Reiki may benefit mood.

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This work was supported by an independent sponsor, Dr. Lynette Bowden, to whom the authors wish to express their gratitude.

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Date Deposited:

24 Feb 2015 11:19

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:08

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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