Top-Level Managers’ Psychophysical Recovery Investigated Through Different Psychophysiological Parameters Benefits From Training Based on Muscle Relaxation and Self-monitoring of HRV-Biofeedback


  • Carlo Pruneti University of Parma
  • Alice Fiduccia University of Parma
  • Sara Guidotti University of Parma



Top-level managers, Stress Response, Progressive Muscle Relaxation, Heart Rate Variability, Biofeedback


Objective. The present study aimed to verify whether training based on progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) and self-monitoring of heart rate variability biofeedback (HRV-BFB) could lead to a significant reduction of psychophysical stress among top-level managers, measured on different physiological parameters related to the stress response. Methods. Thirty-four top-level managers, after completing the Symptom Questionnaire (SQ), were subjected to a psychophysiological stress profile (PSP) to describe the psychophysiological activation (Skin Conductance, surface Electromyography, Heart Rate, and Peripheral Temperature were registered in three phases: baseline, stress, and recovery). Following the intervention with PMR and HRV-BFB, SQ and PSP were readministered. Results. A condition of psychophysical stress was detected through SQ and PSP in the total sample at T0. The intervention allowed participants to reduce their psychological symptoms. Furthermore, muscular tension and skin conductance levels were significantly lower in the recovery phase of the PSP administered at T1. Additionally, a reduction in the reactivity to stress was observed in the HR value postintervention. Conclusion. Combining PMR and HRV-BFB therapy can reduce distress symptoms and improve responses to stress. It's cost-effective and offers many benefits, making it a widely recommended intervention.


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