Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan


  • Teri A. ToddEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_776


Joint position sense; Kinesthesia

Short Description or Definition

The word proprioception has its origins in the Latin word propius meaning “one’s own” (Brazis 2002). The second part of the word comes from perception; thus proprioception is the perception of one’s own body. It refers to the representation of the changing configuration of the body through sensory signals generated in the muscles, joints, and skin by the body’s own movements (Kandal et al. 2000).

The proprioceptive sense refers to sensory input and feedback that informs the brain about the movement of one’s limbs and the state of one’s muscles. This ability is crucial for motor control and non-visually guided movements (Wolfe et al. 2007). The three main purposes of proprioception are to control force by grading muscle contractions, allow the limbs to move in sequence with each other (e.g., walking), and maintain upright posture.

The proprioceptive sense is made up of two distinct types of input: kinesthesia and...

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Further Reading

  1. Kandal, E. R., Schwartz, J. H., & Jessell, T. M. (2000). Principles of neural science (4th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.California State University, NorthridgeNorthridgeUSA