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Studies and Stories

We expected the Zentangle Method to increase creativity, focus and self-confidence but what we have found over the years is that it reaches far beyond our original expectations. On this page we will share with you stories and studies about the many benefits of The Zentangle Method and how it is being used all over the globe.

Exploring Zentangle as a virtual mindfulness-based art therapy for people with serious mental illness.  By Marko Stojcevski, Amy Cheung, Victor Agwu, and Xiaoduo Fan. This study was done by University of Massachusetts Medical School with support from the Zentangle Foundation. Pilot research to look at use of the Zentangle Method as art therapy to  improve symptoms and daily functioning for individuals who have been diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder, or major depressive disorder. 
Zentangle¬ģ Pilot Study: A Mindfulness Exercise for Oncology Nurses. By McKenzie Klee, Mary Heitschmidt, Theodore Hiemstra, Krista Lodewyk, Mary Helen Hand, Madeline McIntosh, Catherine Yockey, and Jessica Bishop-Royse. "The purpose of this study was to determine whether Zentangle used as a meditative activity in an acute time frame decreased stress, fatigue, and burnout while increasing professional quality of life and well-being in oncology nurses." The study found, "Nurses‚Äô well-being, socialization, anxiety, fatigue, secondary traumatic stress levels, and stress levels improved significantly. Most participants noted they would continue using Zentangle after the study. Zentangle is another tool to advance nurses‚Äô wellness by encouraging self-care."
The Effects of Zentangle¬ģ on Affective Well-Being Among Adults: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. By Siu-Ki Chung, Fiona Yan-Ye Ho, and Henri Chun-Yiu Chan. The study concluded, "Significant reductions in negative affect were found in the Zentangle group compared with the waitlist control group at both immediate and 2-wk postintervention assessments. Participants who practiced Zentangle for >80 min per week had a significant reduction in anxiety symptoms and an improvement in self-compassion"

An Exploratory Trial of Brief Mindfulness-Based Zentangle Art Workshops in Family Social Services during COVID-19: Transitioning from Offline to Online. By Shirley Man-Man Sit, Ellen Ng, Hilary Pui-Yee Ho, Peony Cheuk-Yeuk Wong, Man-Ping Wang, Sai-Yin Ho, Tai-Hing Lam, and Agnes Yuen-Kwan Lai. The study concluded, "Our Zentangle service program with face-to-face and online workshops showed high satisfaction and positive participant experiences with ICT integration, learning Zentangle, and enhancing psychological and family well-being."

Effects of the original Zentangle Method on older adults with depressive symptoms a randomized waitlist-controlled trial. By Henri Chun-Yiu Chan and Herman Hay-Ming Lo. Published in Current Psychology, May 05, 2023. The study concluded that the Zentangle Method is "an effective alternative treatment approach for older adults with mild to moderate depression."
Effects of Zentangle on Older Adults’ Anxiety, Happiness, and Dexterity, Activities, Adaptation & Aging. By Alex McCord, Sandra McKenny & Louise Horstmanshof (2024).

Introducing Zentangle in the Early Years, is a peer reviewed study by Gillian McAuliffe, CZT and Sandra Hesterman. It evaluates five outcomes of a Zentangle practice for children during early development.

Bay Area cancer survivor credits unique art form for healing.
See related blog post here

Meditative Drawing as an Intervention to reduce Anxiety among Medical Students. By American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine

Can Visual Art Therapy be Implemented with Illiterate Older Adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment? A Pilot Mixed-Method Randomized Controlled Trial. By Golden. M. Masika, RN, MSc, PhD(c)

Improving Undergraduate Students Positive Affect Through Mindful Art Therapy By Ha Ming Hui & Aini Marina Ma‚Äôrof. Published in the International Journal of Academic Research in Progressive Education and Development, 8(4), 757‚Äď777.

Effects of Zentangle art workplace health promotion activities on rural healthcare workers  A quasi-experimental pilot study by M.f. Hsu, C. Wang, S.J. Tzou, T.C. Pan, P.L. Tang. Published in Public Health, Volume 196, 2021, Pages 217-222,ISSN 0033-3506

Effect of Zentangle Intervention on Academic Stress Among High School Students By Tanya Stephenie Bennett, B. Sc. Student, Department of Psychology, Women's Christian College, Chennai