MOVE began in
Bakersfield, California in
Linda Bidabe, with a
team of special
education staff and
a physical therapist,
began a study to
assess the condition
of students with
Today MOVE has
trained over 25,000
is translated in
15 languages, and
MOVE exists in
more than 20
Question 4: Don't we have to break up primitive and abnormal reflexes before children can learn to move?
Don't we have to break up primitive and abnormal reflexes before children can learn to move?
Thee traditional approach to primitive and abnormal reflexes has come
into question in several studies. Karl and Bertha Bobath (in Scrutton,
1984) no longer include tonic neck and tonic labyrinthine reflexes in
their assessment of children. They found that they had grossly overrated
those reflexes in explaining the abnormal patterns of the hypertonic
According to Bax, 1986, abnormal reflexes, primitive responses, and muscle tone are the result of the current cerebral pathology of the student. Any changes over time are probably due to a natural developmental process rather than to any mediation by a therapist or medication given to the student.
In other words, if a reflex can be "broken up," then it was a habitual movement pattern rather than a true reflex. If it cannot be "broken up," then the student needs to learn how to work and move without being a slave to the motor dysfunction. Regardless of the etiology of the movement patterns, the therapist can help a student perform functional activities such as eating, while learning appropriate movement patterns.