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Gymnastics as Remedy: A Study of Nineteenth Century Swedish Medical Gymnastics
Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences, GIH, Department of Sport and Health Sciences, Sport History Research Group.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8501-8987
2018 (English)In: Athens Journal of Sports, E-ISSN 2241-7915, Vol. 5, no 1, p. 33-52Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper examined a form of 19th century globally spread physiotherapy known as Swedish medical gymnastics. The goal of the research was to determine the aim of medical gymnastics, its elements and its performance style. The study also investigated why medical gymnastics had such a large global impact? Applying a qualitative text analysis, the results showed that medical gymnastics, through individually tailored movements, aimed to restore health, which for various reasons had declined. Furthermore, the treatment made particular use of passive movements carried out by someone other than the patient. Even massage was included. However, there were also active movements, under the supervision of or supported by a gymnast. As for the global spread, two factors contributed to this: first, its scientific and philosophical foundations were typical of the period; and second, recent graduates of the Royal Central Gymnastics Institute in Stockholm went abroad to promote Ling gymnastics, the type of gymnastics to which medical gymnastics belonged. Medical gymnastics treatment became an important source of income for both the graduates and the Royal Central Gymnastics Institute. This led, ultimately, to many people coming into contact with this form of gymnastics. Yet another reason was its rootedness, both in the past and in the future, where physical exercise remains of major importance for maintaining or regaining health.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 5, no 1, p. 33-52
Keywords [en]
Medical gymnastics, Ling gymnastics, qualitative text analyses, physiotherapy
National Category
History
Research subject
Social Sciences/Humanities
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:gih:diva-5221OAI: oai:DiVA.org:gih-5221DiVA, id: diva2:1189520
Available from: 2018-03-12 Created: 2018-03-12 Last updated: 2018-03-12Bibliographically approved

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Lundquist Wanneberg, Pia

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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Output format
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