Emotional vitality: Concept of importance for rehabilitation

Skye P. Barbic, Susan J. Bartlett, Nancy E. Mayo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To (1) provide a framework for the conceptualization of emotional vitality as an important construct for rehabilitation professionals; (2) outline the existing scope and breadth of knowledge currently available regarding the definition and measurement of emotional vitality in persons with chronic health conditions; and (3) identify the extent to which the components can be mapped to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF). Design: Activities included a scoping review of the literature, and a Delphi mapping exercise using the ICF. Setting: Not applicable. Participants: Not applicable. Intervention: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measure: Not applicable. Results: The results of this study suggest that emotional vitality is a complex latent construct that includes (1) physical energy and well-being, (2) regulation of mood, (3) mastery, and (4) engagement and interest in life. Existing literature supported the presence of all 4 components of the construct. The mapping exercise showed that 3 of these components could be readily mapped to the Body Function chapter of the ICF (energy, mood, mastery). Conclusions: Emotional vitality may influence both the physical and emotional adaptation to living with a chronic illness or disability and should be included in both assessment and treatment planning to optimize rehabilitation outcomes. Future research is needed to refine the definition and identify optimal methods of measuring this construct.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1547-1554
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Emotions
  • Mental health
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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