Anyway, I was thinking about poker massages the other day after reading an interesting blog post by Dan Ariely over at "Irrationally Yours". Ariely discusses three interesting studies in which people received a 15-minute massage, a 45-minute Swedish massage, or were just touched on the shoulder by a woman (note: these were three different studies, not three options compared in one study). The studies reached interesting findings and conclusions:
- Massage releases oxytocin, a chemical leading to feelings of well-being.
- Massage recipients are more empathetic and trusting.
- Massage recipients are more generous givers in a money "trust" game.
- Massage recipients are more relaxed and less aggressive.
- Massage recipients feel more safe and secure.
- Massage recipients make riskier financial decisions when gambling or investing money.
Of course, now that I think about it, the poker world should be grateful Phil Ivey appears to love getting massages at the poker table. The Ivey juggernaut would be nigh-unstoppable otherwise!