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When we are under stress, one of the changes in the body is muscular tension, especially those around the neck, shoulders and face. This can lead to physical pain, restlessness, tiredness and more stress. When the breathing muscles are tensed, it can also lead to difficulty in breathing. Oxygenation of the brain will be poor, and this naturally worsens the stress reaction. One effective way to overcome this is by using a relaxation technique known as Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR). PMR was first introduced by an American physician by the name Dr. Edmund Jacobson. This is an effective technique for relaxing the muscles in the body, which in turn calms the mind. Since its introduction in the nineteen thirties, there have been many versions of PMR. The one introduced here consists of 10 basic postures, and each posture involves alternatively tensing and relaxing a different group of muscles in the body. The subsequent figures and instructions will guide you on the basic steps involved in PMR.
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