Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Physical Therapy (MPT)


Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Thomas Mohr


Biofeedback, Psychology; Motor Skills


The purpose of this Independent Study is to review the literature concerning mental practice and its effects on motor skill performance and retention as important within the field of physical therapy. The study of mental practice as concerned with physical therapy is important as this .modality is not often included in patient treatment programs, despite its potential applications. The content of this paper will consist of. definitions, theoretical explanations, effectiveness of mental practice, and the effects of individual differences on mental practice. The primary research questions were: (1) What is mental practice? (2) How does mental practice work? (3) Does mental practice facilitate motor skill acquisition, performance and retention? (4) Do any differences between individuals affect the results achieved with mental practice? (5) Does mental practice have any application to physical therapy and what can be done to maximize its gains in a physical therapy setting?