Psychomotor therapy

The Term Psychomotor Therapy

  • Psychomotor therapy is a somato-therapeutical activity using model, goal-aimed movement programs. Performing these requires an active participation of patient; it works not only with the biological part of a personality, but also with the psychic one and with social relations.
  • Corporal exercise could only be considered as a therapy when it is goal-directed and focused somato-psychical influence of psychical disorders.

Theoretical Rationale 

  • Psychological change will be reflected in function of central nervous system.
  • The term psychosomatic state expresses the complex feeling of the individual including the mood state and bodily feeling.
  • Psychological discomfort can have bodily consequences. The close relation between psychological state and bodily condition is evident.
  • Corporeal scheme is the basic co-existence with the world.
  • Psychic and psychosomatic problems seem to be present in our body.
  • The body awareness interrelated of bodily and psychological functions.
  • Passive as well as active motoric activity helps to improve motoric functions.
  • Active motoric activity develops the personality, the self-concepts, and the self-evaluation. Psychomotor therapyPsychomotor Therapy helps the patients to more entire self-comprehensions and learning their own abilities during the treatment so that patient can use these for developing their own individuality and sociability. 

Sense of mobility


It is about realizing our own body, its physical abilities and subsequently the possibility of controlling the body. Positive experience helps to evolve and strengthen the body scheme.

  • Unity of Body and MindMovement is one of the connections between inner and outer bodies. Intentional,  


    • actively performed movement also introduces the physical and psychical activity. It is means, which expresses both body and psyche.
    • Psychosomatic unity (the unity of body and psychic)
  • Positive self-reception  


    • Objective body scheme differs from subjective picture of one’s own body very often. It is necessary to choose synchronizing exercises with an adequate difficulty needed for performance in order to reclassify the self-perception in the meaning of more positive acceptance. The creation of the latter one is based on one’s own experiences with inner and outer environments including interpersonal structures, which possibly doesn’t have to be true in psychic disorders. The experience of unity is considered the most important. By realizing one’s own body scheme the level of disintegration decreases. Excessively difficult exercise could activate defense mechanisms.
    • Self-acceptance and integrity
    • During the body exercises performance, the patient is brought to the state of   awareness of their own body, its positions, course of movement, performance of movement action, and its meaning part. (The process of creating autonomy is particularly important in psychotic patients.)
    • Body symbolic
    • Movement and body positions have symbolic meaning. That is why it is possible to express themselves through movement (used mainly in dance therapy).
  • Emotional spontaneity


  • The patient’s conditions of their lives often forced to suppress the display of their emotions associated with the need to express their needs and wishes.

 The psychomotor therapeutic programs are focused on the initiation of cognitive and emotional processes. Exercises are easy to manage, performance is not emphasized. The goal is to bring positive experience of oneself; tension is being released. Healthy parts of personality are supported in order to improve self-confidence and belief in environment and in possibility to experience congeniality and happiness. Positive emotional experience is emphasized. Quality of exercises performance is not important.


The process of movement activities initiates spontaneity and creativity. The aim of some programs is to develop the creativity directly.

The patient is also lead towards own creative approach to solve game situations and movement tasks.

  • Sociability


During the body exercises performance, the patient is aware of movements of others and the way those are perceived by them. The perception of one’s own movements and movements of others enables not only confrontation but also inner intentional self-regulation of one’s own movement.

  • Communication


For patients is easily nonverbal that verbal communication. We used movement with nonverbal communication programs. The means of communication is the movement. Nonverbal communication creates a situation for the emergence of verbal communication



HÁTLOVÁ, B. Kinezioterapie, pohybová cvičení v léčbě psychických poruch. Praha: Karolinum, 2003 SBN 80-246-0420-5.

Hátlová,B., Adámková, M.: Psychomotorická terapie. in Kolář, al. Rehabilitace v klinické praxi. Galén 2010. ISBN 978-80-7262-657-1

ROGERS, C. R. On Becoming a Person. Constable, London, 1971.