Gross Motor Function Measure

Discover the Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM), a valuable tool for assessing children with cerebral palsy or neurological impairments. Download a free PDF example.

By Audrey Liz Perez on Jun 20, 2024.

Fact Checked by RJ Gumban.

Use Template
Gross Motor Function Measure PDF Example
toolsShare uiAI icon

What is a Gross Motor Function?

Gross motor function refers to the ability to perform large muscle movements and coordinate the body in activities such as sitting, crawling, walking, and running. Gross motor function is essential for everyday activities and independence. For children with neurological impairments or conditions like cerebral palsy, evaluating and tracking their gross motor function is critical for determining appropriate interventions and support.

The is a standardized observational assessment designed to evaluate gross motor function in children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments. The GMFM is often used to monitor changes in gross motor function over time or in response to interventions such as physical therapy or surgery. It consists of 88 items (or 66 for the GMFM-66 version) grouped into five dimensions: lying and rolling, sitting, crawling and kneeling, standing and walking, and running and jumping.

Printable Gross Motor Function Measure

Download this Gross Motor Function Measure to assess children with cerebral palsy or neurological impairments.

How does the Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) work?

The GMFM is conducted by a trained evaluator, such as a physical therapist or pediatric specialist, who observes the child performing each item and scores their performance based on predetermined criteria. Here are the main steps involved in using the GMFM:

Step 1: Preparation

Before conducting the assessment, the evaluator should familiarize themselves with the GMFM scoring manual, gather necessary equipment, and ensure adequate space for the child to perform the tasks.

Step 2: Establish rapport

The evaluator must establish rapport with the child and their caregivers to ensure a comfortable and cooperative environment. The evaluator should explain the purpose of the assessment and what to expect during the session.

Step 3: Warm-up

The child may need a brief warm-up period to become comfortable with the environment and the evaluator. This could include engaging in a few regular activities or exercises.

Step 4: Assessment

The evaluator will guide the child through the GMFM items, asking them to perform each task to the best of their ability. The evaluator will observe the child's performance and score each item on a four-point scale from 0 to 3, according to the scoring criteria provided in the manual.

Step 5: Scoring and interpretation

After completing the assessment, the evaluator will calculate the scores for each dimension and the total GMFM score. These scores can be used to track changes in the child's motor function over time or evaluate the effectiveness of interventions. The scores can also be compared with age-matched norms or the child's previous GMFM scores to assess progress.

Step 6: Documentation and communication

The evaluator should document the child's performance, scores, and relevant observations. Communicating the results to the child's caregivers and other care team members is essential to inform decision-making and develop appropriate intervention plans.

GMFM Scoring

The GMFM uses a four-point scale for scoring each item: 0 (does not initiate), 1 (initiates), 2 (partially completes), and 3 (completes). The scores for each dimension can be combined to create a total GMFM score, which can be used to track changes in a child's gross motor function over time or evaluate the effectiveness of interventions.

Gross Motor Function Measure example (sample)

In this guide, we have provided a sample answered GMFM test that will serve as a helpful reference for evaluators, caregivers, and other professionals involved in assessing and caring for children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments.

Download this Gross Motor Function Measure Example (Sample) here:

Gross Motor Function Measure example (sample)

When to use this GMFM Test?

The Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) is a valuable tool for evaluating and monitoring the gross motor function of children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments. Knowing when to use the GMFM test is crucial for obtaining meaningful and actionable insights into a child's motor abilities and informing intervention plans. 

The GMFM is most appropriate for use when:

  1. Evaluating a child's gross motor function to determine their strengths and weaknesses and identify areas for targeted intervention.
  2. Monitoring a child's progress over time to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, or surgery.
  3. Establishing baseline measurements of gross motor function to assess changes in the child's abilities as they grow and develop.
  4. Comparing a child's gross motor function to age-matched norms or their previous GMFM scores to determine if they are making expected progress or if additional support is needed.
  5. Collaborating with other healthcare professionals, educators, and caregivers to inform decision-making and develop comprehensive, individualized care plans for the child.

Who is this Gross Motor Function Measure PDF for?

The Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) PDF is invaluable for various professionals, caregivers, and researchers working with children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments impacting motor function. This comprehensive tool is designed for:

Physical and occupational therapists

These professionals are crucial in assessing and treating children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments. The GMFM provides them with a standardized and reliable method to evaluate and track their patients' gross motor function over time. This information can help inform treatment plans, set goals, and measure the effectiveness of interventions.

Pediatricians and other healthcare professionals

The GMFM is helpful for pediatricians, neurologists, and other healthcare professionals caring for children with motor function challenges. By incorporating the GMFM into their assessments, these professionals can gain valuable insights into the child's motor abilities and collaborate with other care team members to develop a comprehensive, individualized care plan.

Educators and special education professionals

School settings can present unique challenges for children with motor function difficulties. Educators and special education professionals can use the GMFM to better understand a child's gross motor abilities and inform accommodations or modifications within the educational environment. This can promote the child's success and participation in school activities.

Parents and caregivers

The GMFM PDF can be a valuable resource for parents and caregivers of children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments, allowing them to better understand their child's gross motor function and support their development. By becoming familiar with the GMFM, parents, and caregivers can work closely with healthcare professionals and educators to advocate for their child's needs and monitor their progress.

Researchers

The GMFM is a widely recognized and reliable tool for studying the effectiveness of various interventions for children with motor function challenges. By incorporating GMFM into their research studies, researchers can generate valuable data and insights that contribute to our understanding of best practices for improving the motor function of children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments.

Physical Therapy Software Feedback

Benefits of free Gross Motor Function Measures

The Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) is a valuable tool for assessing and tracking the motor abilities of children with cerebral palsy or other neurological impairments. Utilizing a free GMFM resource not only makes this assessment more accessible to healthcare professionals, educators, and caregivers but also offers a host of benefits that contribute to better understanding, planning, and managing the child's needs. 

Standardized assessment

The GMFM provides a consistent and reliable method for evaluating a child's gross motor function, allowing for meaningful comparisons over time or between children. Using standardized criteria and scoring systems, the GMFM ensures that assessments are conducted consistently, reducing variability and increasing the accuracy of the results.

Comprehensive evaluation

The GMFM covers many motor skills, from basic movements, like rolling and sitting, to more complex activities, like walking and jumping. This comprehensive assessment allows evaluators to gain a complete understanding of a child's gross motor abilities, ensuring that all aspects of their motor function are considered when making decisions about interventions and support services.

Informed decision-making

The GMFM helps inform decisions about appropriate interventions and support services for children with motor function challenges. By providing a detailed picture of a child's gross motor abilities, the GMFM allows healthcare professionals, educators, and caregivers to make evidence-based decisions about the most effective strategies and resources to support the child's development and participation in daily activities.

Progress tracking

The GMFM enables caregivers and healthcare professionals to monitor a child's progress and evaluate the effectiveness of interventions. By comparing a child's scores over time or in response to specific interventions, the GMFM can help determine whether the child is making expected progress or if adjustments to their care plan are needed. This ongoing monitoring ensures that interventions are tailored to the child's unique needs and can be adapted to support their continued growth and development.

Collaborative care

The GMFM facilitates communication and collaboration among healthcare professionals, educators, and caregivers involved in a child's care. By providing a shared understanding of a child's gross motor function, the GMFM helps to create a coordinated approach to supporting the child's development and participation in daily activities. This collaborative approach ensures that all care team members are working together to provide the best possible support for the child and their family.

Why use this GMFM app?

Using a GMFM app like Carepatron offers several advantages for conducting and scoring the Gross Motor Function Measure:

Streamlined data collection

The app allows evaluators to quickly and easily input scores and notes, saving time and reducing the risk of errors.

Real-time scoring

The app calculates scores for each dimension and the total GMFM score automatically, providing immediate feedback on a child's performance.

Data storage and organization

The app stores all assessment data securely, making it easy to access and review past assessments or track a child's progress over time.

Collaboration

The app enables seamless communication and collaboration among care team members, facilitating informed decision-making and comprehensive care planning.

Accessibility

The app can be accessed on various devices, making it a convenient and user-friendly option for evaluators in multiple settings.

Physical Therapy Software
How to score the GMFM?
How to score the GMFM?

Commonly asked questions

How to score the GMFM?

The GMFM is scored on a four-point scale for each item: 0 (does not initiate), 1 (initiates), 2 (partially completes), and 3 (completes). The scores for each dimension can be combined to create a total GMFM score.

What does the GMFM measure?

The GMFM measures a child's gross motor function in five dimensions: lying and rolling, sitting, crawling and kneeling, standing and walking, running, and jumping.

How to administer the GMFM?

The GMFM is administered by a trained evaluator, who guides the child through each item and observes their performance. The evaluator scores each item based on predetermined criteria, calculates the scores for each dimension and the total GMFM score, and documents the child's performance and relevant observations.

Preparation, establishing rapport, warming up, assessing, scoring and interpreting, and documentation and communication are all essential steps in administering the GMFM effectively. The evaluator must be familiar with the GMFM scoring manual and practice scoring items to build their skills and confidence in using the instrument.

Join 10,000+ teams using Carepatron to be more productive

One app for all your healthcare work