Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders

Living Edition
| Editors: Fred R. Volkmar

Hug Machine

  • Temple Grandin
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6435-8_180-3


I developed the hug machine, also called the squeeze machine, to calm my anxiety when I was a teenager. I am a person with autism, and when I entered puberty, I was in a constant state of anxiety and panic attacks. When I visited my aunt’s ranch at the age of 15, I observed cattle being handled in a squeeze chute for their vaccination. A squeeze chute is a narrow metal stall that holds the cattle tightly between two metal side panels. Some of the cattle appeared to relax when pressure was applied by the squeeze sides. After I saw this, I tried the squeeze chute and the deep pressure calmed my anxiety. Then I built a squeeze chute-type device that I could get in (Grandin 2006; Grandin and Scariano 1986). It has padded sides that apply pressure on both sides of the body. I got in the squeeze machine on my hands and knees, and the sides applied pressure to the sides of my body. The effect was to have even, deep pressure over a large area of my body. Another feature of the...

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References and Reading

  1. Ayres, J. A. (1979). Sensory integration and the child. Los Angeles: Western Psychological Services.Google Scholar
  2. Edelson, S. M., Edelson, M. G., Kerr, D. C., & Grandin, T. (1999). Behavioral and physiological effects of deep pressure on children with autism: A pilot study evaluating the efficacy of Grandin’s hug machine. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 53, 145–152.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Animal SciencesColorado State UniversityFort CollinsUSA