European Congress of Psychomotricity Lisbon, 2004
Psychomotor Identity: Specificity and Diversity
31st March 1st and 2nd April 2004
Fundaçao Calouste Gulbenkian – Lisbon
In recent years, psychomotricity has passed through a very significant phase of development. This phase has allowed the recognition of the profession by other professional profiles, by academics and also politicians.
Psychomotricity is a relatively young profession working in a close relation between body, psyche and mind, directed to all age groups and developing its activity with aims of prevention, (re) education, rehabilitation and therapy.
Psychomotricity presents a global vision of man’s functioning, considering the interaction between emotional, cognitive and motor behaviour.
This integrated approach is very important in today’s society, which is more, and more specialized and technologically orientated. These social changes, challenge psychomotricity for new demands, in the fields of basic professional education, research and professional development.
This Congress has shown a wide conceptual and methodological diversity, and contributed to clarify common notions in its scientific and professional field. Diversity might be seen as a weakness as there are so many different approaches, but it might also be seen as a strength, when one is searching for a highlight in the common ground of these different approaches.
In this phase of development, it is essential to give evidence to the core values of psychomotor identity, but at same time, it is essential to respect the cultural, social, institutional and political diversity.
Having in consideration the congress sub-themes, the domain of “Epistemological and Conceptual Basis” has enhanced the need to clarify the object and method of this scientific field, based not only on clinical evidence, but also data obtained through formal scientific research.
In its essential core, psychomotricity involves a methodology focused on body mediation, approaching the person as a whole in his psycho-corporal organization. The body is seen as undissociated from living memories, interiorized through the significant value of experience.
In this sense, psychomotricity can promote the development of personal, familiar and social identity, through the integrated expression of emotional life, cognitive organization and motor expression (functional, and relational).
The identity of psychomotricity should have a parallel development with the identity of the psychomotrician, and we hope all countries of the European Forum of Psychomotricity, can progress towards the creation of a specific and autonomous initial education.
About the second sub-theme, “Psychomotor Semiology, Evaluation and Diagnosis” the congress emphasized the need to create new instruments for diagnosis, specific to psychomotor clinical and research specifications, in order to validate the quality of the effects achieved through psychomotor intervention. This effort will provide a solid basis for political decisions namely those related with the official recognition of the profession, but it also requires that basic professional education can include contents to prepare future psychomotricians, to design and implement research projects.
Concerning the third sub-theme “Intervention Methodology and Techniques”, the congress revealed a significant dynamic and a modem way to understand the person in his/her psychosocial environment, using different instruments (aquatic environment, animal mediation, expressive therapies and new technologies). All these new approaches should keep in mind that the main reference to psychomotor intervention is the body as a relational significant of the Self.
The fourth sub-theme “Interpersonal Relation in Psychomotricity” has given relevance to the importance of an “external look”. This “external look” has a decisive importance in the interpersonal relation as provides a reference and a security factor to the person. The Psychomotor professional, acts as a mediator in a significant relation between the interior and exterior world of the person, helping him/her to integrate body and verbal expression, allowing a significant association between sensations, emotions and symbolical integration of the experience.
The fifth sub-theme “Intervention Contexts” has stressed that psychomotricity shows a great dynamic and interest by new approaches, developing its activity in multidisciplinary and tran-disciplinary framing, not only in Health system (central point of reference) but also in Education, Justice, Social and Labour systems, among others.
Finally, the Scientific Committee of the EFP Congress 2004, being aware that identity is also promoted by the quality of communication, recommends the increase of students, teachers and researchers mobility, the cooperation between countries with some geographical or cultural affinities and also the need to prepare application that can lead to a European Network linking the different institution that work and teach Psychomotricity.