icon psychomotor overexcitabilityChildren, with psychomotor OE, have an enormous amount of energy. They have a strong need to engage in physical activities, liking to move, dance, run, climb, play fight as well as fast games and sports. They often express strong enthusiasm when engaged and might talk rapidly and excessively.


They may have difficulty sitting still and concentrating when not interested, often seen as a characteristic of ADD/ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), which means that the psychomotor OE child has the potential of being misdiagnosed with ADHD.

“John (7) can’t sit still.  During dinner he runs between the table and the cupboard, the fridge and the toys in the other room; he hardly touches his chair, while talking all the time. The more emphasis his behaviour gets and the more the parents get stressed, the more John moves and talks.” Observation by Simone


When feeling emotionally tense, they might be restless, compulsive talkers and develop nervous habits such as nail-biting, hair pulling and skin scratching.

When stressed they can be very impulsive, show an intense physical drive, organise their room very compulsively (which is sometimes seen as a characteristic of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), act out, become extremely competitive or engage in adrenaline stimulating behaviours. When under stress psychomotor OE individuals often show signs of workaholism and competitiveness.

To be able to move or fidget can be calming and aid concentration.

“My son could only listen to me reading  a book out loud when his hands were occupied He would always draw or try to play very silently with his Lego.” Simone about her now young adult son.

Energy Changing

Often if a child with psychomotor OE enters the room, the energy changes and his or her presence can be disturbing to the routine.

This OE is a great gift to have because, although difficult in a classroom setting, later in life, they are able to put all that energy into achieving their own chosen goals.
Read more about the other areas of intensity: Sensual, Intellectual, Imaginational and Emotional.

Further Reading


Lucinda Leo’s (PowerWood Volunteer) Blog: 7 Signs Your Child Has Psychomotor Overexcitability


Jade Ann Rivera: How to Identify and Cope with Overexcitabilities, Part 4 of 5: Psychomotor Overexcitability
Living With Intensity: Understanding the Sensitivity, Excitability and Emotional Development of Gifted Children, Adolescents, and Adults (Book edited by Daniels and Piechowski)
Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnosis of Gifted Children and Adults (James T Webb)


Find out if you or your child has OE as well

PowerWood’s Community

Find understanding, tools and strategies that work in an understanding, respectful and compassionate Community.
PowerWood can be your and your families advocate and your second family.

Join our Community

Book a Free Introductory Talk with a Professional*

Your Free Introductory Talk of 45-60 minutes by Skype or FaceTime will be with Senior Consultant Simone de Hoogh.

You can read more about PowerWood’s Consultancy Sessions,  the Benefits of a Free Introductory Talk and PowerWood’s Consultancy Services Tiered Fee Structure.

During this Free Introductory Talk, you will get the chance to assess if you think or feel if working with Simone would be the right path forward for you.

For Simone de Hoogh this talk is a chance to get to know you a bit and collect information about you and your situation and to assess if she or PowerWood can be of help in any way or if she better refer you to someone else or another organisation.  Simone de Hoogh will explore together with you what the issues are that you or your family feel challenged by and explore the bigger picture. At the end of your talk, she will share if she thinks she or PowerWood current services can be of help and if yes how.

*Free Introductory Talks are available to FreeBee or Friend members of PowerWood.

Explore how joining our PowerWood community by becoming a member benefit you and what types of memberships are available.

*I allow this website to collect and store submitted data. ** I allow PowerWood to create and store a file with personal data about me and my family.