Psychomotor therapy targeting anger and aggressive behaviour in individuals with mild or borderline intellectual disabilities: A systematic review.

BACKGROUND: Poor anger regulation is considered a risk factor of aggression in individuals with mild or borderline intellectual disabilities. Psychomotor therapy (PMT) targets anger regulation through body- and movement-oriented interventions. This study aims to inform practitioners on efficacy and research-base of PMT in this population.

METHOD: This systematic review evaluated nine studies which met inclusion criteria in terms of participants, intervention procedures, outcomes and certainty of evidence.

RESULTS: Seven studies revealed a substantial reduction of aggressive behaviour or anger. Certainty of evidence was rated inconclusive in most cases due to absence of experimental control.

CONCLUSIONS: We can conclude that body-oriented PMT, involving progressive relaxation and meditation procedure “Soles of the Feet”, is a promising approach. However, the paucity of studies and methodological limitations preclude classifying it as an evidence-based practice. This suggests stronger methodological research and research aimed at PMT’s mechanisms of action (e.g., improved interoceptive awareness) is warranted.