A vocabulary describing health-terms of movement quality–a phenomenological study of movement communication

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Purpose: The aim of the study was to develop a vocabulary targeting communication of health-terms of movement quality, establishing professional knowledge of a movement terminology usefull within rehabilitation. Methods: A phenomenological study design was chosen, inviting movement experts working in rehabilitation to describe movement observations when a change into more functional, health related ways of moving appeared in the rehabilitation processes. 15 physiotherapy experts were recruited, five from the field of neurology, primary health care and psychiatry. The informants had between 12-38 years of clinical practice, treating patients of all ages with a wide specter of diagnoses. Data collection followed a qualitative study design, of individual, in-depth interviews, based on a semi-structured interview guide. The interviews were taped, transcribed and sent to the informants for validation. Data analysis followed recommendation of Giorgi, modified by Malterud. Ethical considerations were followed. Results: Data revealed a vocabulary, clustered in five themes, Biomechanical, Physiological, Psycho-socio-cultural, Existential and Overarching perspective, 16 underlying categories and 122 descriptive health-terms of movement quality. Conclusion: The study demonstrated a multi-perspective movement vocabulary of 122 health characteristic terms, developed to facilitate movement communication within the broad field of rehabilitation. The result calls for further research concerning a movement vocabulary.Implications for Rehabilitation The phenomenon of movement quality has a potential for promoting rehabilitation-specific skills. A vocabulary describing health-terms of movement quality is useful within the overall rehabilitation field providing enhanced and specific health directed communication. A movement specific health-terminology will have impact on implications and facilitating a person-centered and goal directed rehabilitation. Rehabilitation professionals will have a multi-perspective, movement specific and structured terminology to communicate direct and concretely with patients, the multi-professional team, in society, and with politicians.


  • Liv Helvik Skjaerven
  • Gunvor Gard
  • Antonia Gómez-Conesa
  • Daniel Catalan-Matamoros
External organisations
  • Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
  • Luleå University of Technology
  • University of Murcia
  • Carlos III University of Madrid
  • University of Almeria
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Other Health Sciences
  • General Language Studies and Linguistics


  • basic body awareness therapy, movement health-terms, movement quality, Movement vocabulary, professional movement communication
Original languageEnglish
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2019 Apr 22
Publication categoryResearch