HeartSpace Blog

A thoughtful commentary on issues in Physical Therapy for children, adolescents and adults experiencing challenges with movement

Pondering Postural Control: The Proprioceptive System

Proprioception = the sensation of body position and movement   Our sense of proprioception is a (mostly) unconscious piece of our perception of our body’s position. It involves information from  mechanoreceptors in our muscles, tendons and joints: muscle spindles and Golgi tendon organs (GTOs).  This information provides a constant monitoring of the position of our

Pondering Postural Control: The Vestibular System

Don’t tell the other sensory systems but the vestibular system is my favourite. This system is the one that piqued my interest years ago, the one that began my journey to understanding more about the connections between the dynamic nature of the sensory systems and postural control, the one that still challenges me in the

Pondering Postural Control: Stability Limits & Internal Representations

And so here we are on the brink of balance, the place we call stability limits. I’m not sure how often we think about the edges of balance. I first started thinking about stability limits (although not using these words) when I learned about equilibrium reactions in my NDT certification course.  We needed to be

Pondering Postural Control: Anticipatory Mechanisms

We’re all getting goose bumps thinking about all the possibilities here – amiright?  It’s true I get super enthusiastic about this piece of the postural control pie and during this discussion I hope you do too.   Consider last month we talked about reactive mechanisms; the literature indicated that children with sensory and motor challenges

Pondering Postural Control: Reactive Mechanisms

When I think about reactive mechanisms, I see them everywhere. During infant development righting, protective and equilibrium postural reactions occur in response to specific sensory input (visual, vestibular and proprioceptive). These reactions are somewhat stereotypical in nature, but they are more complex responses than primitive reflexes so they support more complex functional skills. Over time