British Association and College of Occupational Therapists Member - Click to visit their Website Registered with the Health and Care Professions Council - click to visit their website Member of the Physio First Organisation - click to visit their website member of the Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice - click to visit their website Nick Smith, INPP Licentiate - click to visit the INPP website


According to Sensory Integration Theory, ‘praxis’ or ‘motor planning’ is the ability to create ideas about how to act and interact with the environment; carry out the action plans; and correct one’s actions so that the motor execution matches the desired outcome.

These three areas: ideation (the idea), planning (putting together the steps and sequence), and execution (the motor phase) work together to allow the individual to organise his or her behaviour in time and space. 

Praxis is a learned skill and changes across the lifespan; its development depends on the individual’s experiences. The ability to efficiently motor plan is based on thinking skills as well as integrated sensory development.

Our motor planning abilities are considered an essential foundation for learning and classroom performance.


Definitions of Praxis:
Praxis is a uniquely human skill that enables us to interact effectively with the physical world [Ayres, 1985].

Praxis is the ability of the brain to conceive of, organise and carry out a sequence of unfamiliar actions [Ayres, 1973].

Praxis is the neurological process by which cognition directs motor action, motor or action planning is that intermediary process which bridges ideation and motor execution to enable adaptive interactions with physical world [Ayres, 1985].


A problem with planning, sequencing and executing unfamiliar actions resulting in awkward and poorly co-ordinated motor skills typically seen with a sensory processing deficit. It is usually seen with difficulty doing new activities or those that are done infrequently

Issues associated with poor praxis:

  • Delayed developmental milestones
  • Difficulty following multi-step directions
  • Poor planning and difficulties with spatial awareness
  • Poor performance in gross and fine motor skills
  • Strong desire for sameness or routines
  • Has an awkward pen/pencil grasp
  • Has poor handwriting and difficulties copying
  • Dislikes or reluctant to participate in sports
  • Intense and easily frustrated
  • Problems with daily life tasks like dressing or using utensils / cutlery
  • Poor organisational skills

[Ref: May-Benson, Teasdale & Koomar, 2006]


Click Here to visit the Sensory Integration and Praxis Tests Page

Click Here For More Information on Sensory Integration and Processing (PDF Download)


Like Us On facebook Follow Us on twitter

food School - Therapy Services for Feeding Difficulties

Praxis test 3

Praxis test

Accreditation Logos Link to The SPD Foundation Website Link to the Interactive Metronome Website Link to the Talktools Website Link to the Tree Of Hope Website Link to the Sensory Integration Network Website
Copyright © 2016. Therapy In Praxis Limited. All Rights Reserved. St James' Business Park, 9, Grimbald Crag Court, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire. HG5 8QB.

Telephone: 01423 861215 |    |   Company number (registered England and Wales Since 1999): 03841429  |  Website Design By Scarborough Website Design