What is MOVE?

Many people take mobility for granted. Mobility, which encompasses more than walking and moving from place to place, can be essential to personal dignity and quality of life. These goals of increasing feelings of self-worth and developing functions are what motivate the M.O.V.E. program, short for Mobility Opportunities Via Education/Experience.

M.O.V.E. is all about positive progress

M.O.V.E. is a curriculum aimed at providing for fuller participation in home, school, work, and community environments for those who struggle with mobility. Sitting, standing, and transitioning are all components of movement, and can help support additional functional learning.

One of the strengths of the M.O.V.E. program is how it is highly individualized. It features a top-down approach, where a learner’s current levels are evaluated and leveraged to assist in further development. Rather than starting from the ground-up, M.O.V.E. increases effectiveness by working with strengths.

Helping people develop skills and better health

Through M.O.V.E. basic motor skills and meaningful life skills are taught, which help a learner become more functional in the community. Also, movement is a crucial component of overall health and well-being. Through movement, individuals function better, avoid contractures, pressure sores, and issues with respiratory, gastrointestinal, and cardiovascular systems. Individualized learning plans reinforce these goals by not only focusing on abilities and areas of need but by also considering the learning styles of the individual.

The learning principles of M.O.V.E. include:

  • Teaching essential skills to those who learn slowly, which maximizes the impact of lessons.
  • Ensuring that learners get appropriate individual attention, even when part of a larger group.
  • Increasing session frequency in cases where learners may forget skills quickly.
  • Being resilient and responsive to those who do not generalize learning — which can involve using different locations, methods, and resources.
  • Prioritizing safety, but also introducing risk to increase progress.

M.O.V.E. helps learners overcome barriers by incorporating skills into daily routines, using appropriate equipment, and, most importantly, planning fun and meaningful activities. And, best of all, M.O.V.E. works!

According to M.O.V.E. International, the organization that initiated the program in 1986, its three-year study on the effectiveness of the program saw an overwhelming majority of participants learning to walk with an assistive device, with increased participation and communication with staff. M.O.V.E. is effective because the motor skills acquired during activity-based intervention transfer to everyday activities. Once taught, learners keep on learning through daily functions.

M.O.V.E. is one curriculum used by the Center for Disability Services in helping people get better at life. Through M.O.V.E., people can begin to chart their own path to happiness, independence, self-confidence, and success.