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Key Movement Issues

Key movement issues are movement skills that develop spontaneously in typical development, and underlie all functional movement. People with cerebral palsy and like conditions may experience some or all of these movement issues, which can impact on mobility, participation, and communication.

Working out which key movement issues are impacting on a person’s functional participation is an important step to working out what kinds of learning, supports and strategies will be most effective in helping them to meet their goals.

This is a big area with lots of complexity, so this blog series will focus on outlining each of the key issues that might impact on movement and give ideas for things to consider when supporting someone experiencing this movement issue.

For more information, contact CPEC via email at or phone (03) 9560 0700.


Learning to stabilise oneself is an important part of learning to move. This might include things like stabilising through your feet on the floor while sitting, using hands to hold on to a walker while learning to step or leaning on arm rests to push up through hands while sitting. Stability can come from different body parts: core stability, using hands to stabilise body, using feet flat on the floor to stabilise in sitting, leaning against a surface. Having stability in any given position can assist with control and quality of movement for functional participation using other parts of your body – your arms and hands, your legs and feet, your head.

Some people with movement disorders experience excessive movement or changes to muscle tone that impact on their ability to stabilise, often resulting in difficulty controlling movement.

Some strategies to support stability might include:

· Teaching how to stabilise (e.g. putting a spot on the table for a child to rest their non-dominant hand on)

· Checking starting position before moving

· Using equipment to assist with stability (e.g. height adjustable chairs, stools and tables, arm wraps, grasp bar).

Using equipment like lateral supports, pelvic straps and harnesses’.

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