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Nursing Research and Practice
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 124095, 13 pages
Review Article

Reviewing the Literature on the Effectiveness of Pressure Relieving Movements

Rehabilitation Sciences and Research Centre, School of Health Sciences, University of Ulster, Jordanstown, BT37 0QB, UK

Received 22 June 2012; Accepted 12 November 2012

Academic Editor: Jeannie Donnelly

Copyright © 2013 Rachel Schofield et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Sitting for prolonged periods of time increases seating interface pressures, which is known to increase the risk of developing pressure ulcers. Those at risk of developing pressure ulcers are advised to perform pressure relieving movements such as “pushups” or “forward leans” in order to reduce the duration and magnitude of pressure acting on the vulnerable ischial tuberosity region. The aim of this review was to synthesize and critique the existing literature investigating the effectiveness of pressure relieving movements on seating interface pressures. The twenty-seven articles included in this paper highlight the need for further research investigating the effect of recommended pressure relieving movements on the pressures around the ischial tuberosities. Furthermore, this review found that the majority of individuals at risk of developing pressure ulcers do not adhere with the pressure relieving frequency or magnitude of movements currently recommended, indicating a need for pressure ulcer prevention to be explored further.