Graded Motor Imagery

Cloud SwirlsGraded Motor Imagery (GMI) is a rehabilitation process used to treat pain and movement problems related to nervous systems disorders by exercising the brain. It can be taught by a physiotherapist or pain specialist, but is also possible to learn independently with the right amount of research and practice.

Part of the therapy includes something called Mirror Box Therapy, perhaps a little more well known, which involves tricking the brain into believing that the affected limb is healthy. Originally used for relief of phantom limb pain, it has since been proven effective for stroke rehabilitation and CRPS / RSD.

For an introductory look visit:


Some other useful resources:

David Butler on Graded Motor Imagery [Video]
Neuro Orthopaedic Institute

The Effects of Graded Motor Imagery on Chronic Pain
American Pain Society’s Journal of Pain

Graded Motor Imagery – Practical Solutions for Painful Conditions

Graded Motor Imagery Protocol for CRPS
Forward Thinking PT

Graded Motor Imagery: The Science, Theory & Practice
Tim Cocks & Robyn Cook

Clearing the Brain of Phantom Pain
Mirror therapy can re-program a brain’s malfunctioning pain system
by Neuropsychologist Jenni Ogden

See Where It Hurts
by Debra Anscombe Wood

Do It Yourself Mirror Therapy (DVD)
Learn How to Stop Your Phantom Pain by Dr. Beth Darnall
Instructional DVD includes background information, patient demonstrations & FAQs

Re-training Your Brain – Graded Motor Imagery & Mirror Box Therapy for Treatment of CRPS [Video] – RSDSA of America
Dr. Mark Butler