A group of patients at a headache clinic in Canada were taught pacing principles by occupational therapists. These principles included learning to identify and prioritize responsibilities, as well as balancing activity and rest. The patients were also taught skills in delegating or eliminating tasks and scheduling regular rest breaks. The study found that the patients were able to prevent increases in headache intensity by 70% and decrease headache intensity by 65%. Additionally, 70% of the patients used pacing to prevent the onset of headache. By employing pacing principles, the patients were able to have an increased quality of life, function and independence.

There is no universal definition for pacing in medical literature, however there are references to it in the management of chronic pain and rheumatic disease.  Most migraineurs know to watch for triggers, and attempt to keep their lives as steady as possible. Hopefully, more research will be conducted on pacing principles and migraine management. With the holidays fast approaching, it might be a good time to try some of the techniques listed above to help you manage the next hectic six weeks……. PubMed   10/8/12


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