The work in primitive reflexes has been gaining more attention in the last 25 years especially in the last 5-10 years. Since the brain is plastic and responds to regimented, structured activities, it is no wonder that many of the programs available in this area result in a degree of progress.
In March 1969, Dr. Peter Blythe, the founder of The Institute of Neuro Physiological Psychology (INPP) and the pioneer of the INPP method, gave a lecture based upon the work (the book Reading and Remedial Reading) of A. E. Tansley on reading problems that served as the foundation of INPP. Over the next couple of years, Dr. Blythe, together with his student, developed a screening and treatment protocol for children who fit the criteria for what they called “Organic Brain Dysfunction,” i.e. who were ambilateral, had aberrant motor development, and poor visual motor integration skills. The book is available at www.INPP.org.uk. It was shortly after this compilation of work, which included an assessment and approximately a 45 minute daily motor program, that a connection between the retention of primitive reflexes, immature/delayed postural responses, and specific learning difficulties became apparent. At that point, the foundation of INPP changed, since Dr. Blythe was convinced the issues were deeper than previously thought. As a result, he revised his approach and developed the INPP questionnaire and assessment to what it is currently and redefined the diagnosis to Neuro Developmental Delay, better known today (since 2011) as Neuro Motor Immaturity. The treatment has been reduced to no more than 8 minutes a day. This work all occurred in the 1970’s which was way before the work of others such as Blomberg’s RMT, Musgatova’s MNRI, Brain Gym, Primary Movement, etc.
It was Dr. Blythe who pioneered the investigation into the relationship of retained primitive reflexes in children to academic achievement and specific learning difficulties as well as how this relationship can also affect adults with panic disorder, chronic acute anxiety disorder, and agoraphobia. It should be noted that it wasn't until the mid 1980’s that others, who had formal training with Dr. Peter Blythe at INPP in Chester England, began to develop their own approaches and variations based on his work.
The research in this area of the affect of primitive reflexes on areas not limited to sensory processing, academic achievement, and behavior by INPP continues to be a growing body and is currently available at www.inpp.org.uk. It should also be noted that INPP also has a book, and in response to interest by the mainstream medical community of Germany, a 2nd version will be available for medical professionals including OT’s, PT’s, medical doctors etc. in February 2014 published by Wiley Blackwell. This book will serve as a screening tool that has been specifically designed to help physicians bridge the gap between the professional domains of Medicine, Education, and Psychology, to identify signs of neuromotor immaturity in children and adults, thereby enabling them to refer on to relevant agencies for further assessment and the implementation of effective developmental movement programmes.