Training and Support Program for Parents of Children with Disabilities


Provide parents of children with disabilities with basic massage techniques they can use in the home environment with their child.


Massage techniqueParents were trained by certified massage therapists for one hour for 8 weekly sessions. Massage techniques are tailored to meet the needs of the child.

Target Population

Parents of children with disabilities, mostly cerebral palsy and autism. Studies have been undertaken in the UK of 188 parents of children with disabilities.

Clinical Outcomes

Feasibility and parent enjoyment of learning and using the massage techniques have been shown.

Research Outcomes

Significant positive impact of the intervention was shown on parental self-efficacy; there were also significant negative associations with caregiver depression.

Outcome Research References

Barlow, J.H., Powell, L.A., Gilchirst M., Fotiadou M. (2008). The effectiveness of the Training and Support Program for parents of children with disabilities: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 64, 55-62. Email