personal space


Summary: Invisible boundaries surrounding the individual's body which are maintained in relation to others.

Top Publications

  1. Gérin Lajoie M, Richards C, McFadyen B. The negotiation of stationary and moving obstructions during walking: anticipatory locomotor adaptations and preservation of personal space. Motor Control. 2005;9:242-69 pubmed
    ..The personal space (PS) maintained during walking was quantified for the first time under different environmental factors ..
  2. Ladavas E, di Pellegrino G, Farne A, Zeloni G. Neuropsychological evidence of an integrated visuotactile representation of peripersonal space in humans. J Cogn Neurosci. 1998;10:581-9 pubmed
  3. Graziano M, Cooke D. Parieto-frontal interactions, personal space, and defensive behavior. Neuropsychologia. 2006;44:845-59 pubmed, including the ducking and blocking reactions that follow startle, the flight zone of animals, the personal space of humans, the nearby, multimodal attentional space that has been studied in humans, the withdrawal reaction ..
  4. Bassolino M, Serino A, Ubaldi S, Ladavas E. Everyday use of the computer mouse extends peripersonal space representation. Neuropsychologia. 2010;48:803-11 pubmed publisher
  5. Farnè A, Ladavas E. Auditory peripersonal space in humans. J Cogn Neurosci. 2002;14:1030-43 pubmed
  6. Lloyd D, Coates A, Knopp J, Oram S, Rowbotham S. Don't stand so close to me: the effect of auditory input on interpersonal space. Perception. 2009;38:617-20 pubmed
    ..The implications of this research for navigating busy urban environments and for the social interactions of wearers of personal music systems are discussed. ..
  7. Committeri G, Pitzalis S, Galati G, Patria F, Pelle G, Sabatini U, et al. Neural bases of personal and extrapersonal neglect in humans. Brain. 2007;130:431-41 pubmed
    ..However, another component-neglect for personal space-is more often associated with, than double-dissociated from, extrapersonal neglect, especially, in chronic ..
  8. Gérin Lajoie M, Richards C, Fung J, McFadyen B. Characteristics of personal space during obstacle circumvention in physical and virtual environments. Gait Posture. 2008;27:239-47 pubmed
    It is not known how the flexible protective zone maintained around oneself during locomotion (personal space or PS; see [Gérin-Lajoie M, Richards CL, McFadyen BJ...
  9. Serino A, Annella L, Avenanti A. Motor properties of peripersonal space in humans. PLoS ONE. 2009;4:e6582 pubmed publisher

More Information


  1. McLaughlin C, Olson R, White M. Environmental issues in patient care management: proxemics, personal space, and territoriality. Rehabil Nurs. 2008;33:143-7, 177 pubmed
    ..Nurses chapter research committee undertook a study to assess rehabilitation nurses' knowledge of proxemics, personal space, and territoriality and their application in rehabilitation nursing practice...
  2. Serino A, Bassolino M, Farnè A, Ladavas E. Extended multisensory space in blind cane users. Psychol Sci. 2007;18:642-8 pubmed
    ..These results suggest that long-term experience with the cane induces a durable extension of the peripersonal space. ..
  3. Makin T, Holmes N, Zohary E. Is that near my hand? Multisensory representation of peripersonal space in human intraparietal sulcus. J Neurosci. 2007;27:731-40 pubmed
    ..We therefore suggest that, whereas cortical regions within the posterior IPS and LOC represent hand-centered space in a predominantly visual manner, the anterior IPS uses multisensory information in representing perihand space. ..
  4. Deus V, Jokić Begić N. Personal space in schizophrenic patients. Psychiatr Danub. 2006;18:150-8 pubmed
    b>Personal space is the area individuals maintain around themselves into which others cannot intrude without arousing discomfort...
  5. King G, Mallett R, Kozlowski L, Bendel R, Nahata S. Personal space smoking restrictions among African Americans. Am J Prev Med. 2005;28:33-40 pubmed
    This paper investigates the association between implementing a personal space smoking restriction for the home or automobile, and various sociodemographic, social, behavioral, and attitudinal variables...
  6. Macaluso E, Maravita A. The representation of space near the body through touch and vision. Neuropsychologia. 2010;48:782-95 pubmed publisher
    ..These integration processes mediate the orienting of spatial attention and generate an efficient and flexible representation the space around the body. ..
  7. Novelli D, Drury J, Reicher S. Come together: two studies concerning the impact of group relations on personal space. Br J Soc Psychol. 2010;49:223-36 pubmed publisher
    This paper describes two experiments investigating the impact of group relations on personal space. In Study 1, participants (N=39) in minimal groups were told that they would be interacting with another person...
  8. Gessaroli E, Santelli E, di Pellegrino G, Frassinetti F. Personal space regulation in childhood autism spectrum disorders. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e74959 pubmed publisher
    ..during social interaction, and they may feel discomfort and move away when another person intrudes on their personal space. In the present study, we investigated personal space in children with persistent difficulties in the domain ..
  9. Caggiano V, Fogassi L, Rizzolatti G, Thier P, Casile A. Mirror neurons differentially encode the peripersonal and extrapersonal space of monkeys. Science. 2009;324:403-6 pubmed publisher
    ..These results suggest that a set of mirror neurons encodes the observed motor acts not only for action understanding, but also to analyze such acts in terms of features that are relevant to generating appropriate behaviors. ..
  10. Brozzoli C, Cardinali L, Pavani F, Farne A. Action-specific remapping of peripersonal space. Neuropsychologia. 2010;48:796-802 pubmed publisher
  11. Lourenco S, Longo M, Pathman T. Near space and its relation to claustrophobic fear. Cognition. 2011;119:448-53 pubmed publisher
    ..These results are consistent with a defensive function of near space representation and suggest that an over-projection of near space may play an important role in the etiology of claustrophobia. ..
  12. Longo M, Musil J, Haggard P. Visuo-tactile integration in personal space. J Cogn Neurosci. 2012;24:543-52 pubmed publisher
    ..Here we used psychophysics and ERPs to investigate visuo-tactile integration in personal space (i.e., on the skin surface)...
  13. Yu P, Zhu X, Wang X, Wang S, Li W, Tan G, et al. Periodic Nanoneedle and Buffer Zones Constructed on a Titanium Surface Promote Osteogenic Differentiation and Bone Calcification In Vivo. Adv Healthc Mater. 2016;5:364-72 pubmed publisher
    ..The concept of constructing functionalized zones on titanium implant could facilitate future research on improving the design of orthopedic and dental implant surfaces. ..
  14. Sambo C, Iannetti G. Better safe than sorry? The safety margin surrounding the body is increased by anxiety. J Neurosci. 2013;33:14225-30 pubmed publisher
    ..This may also lead to possible interventions to improve their performance under pressure. ..
  15. Pressman M. Disorders of arousal from sleep and violent behavior: the role of physical contact and proximity. Sleep. 2007;30:1039-47 pubmed
  16. Baum N. Shared traumatic reality in communal disasters: toward a conceptualization. Psychotherapy (Chic). 2010;47:249-59 pubmed publisher
  17. Castledine G. Preserving sexuality in mixed-sex wards. Br J Nurs. 2006;15:1267 pubmed
  18. Johnson T, Huang B, Simpson P. Sibling family practices: guidelines for healthy boundaries. J Child Sex Abus. 2009;18:339-54 pubmed publisher
    ..The effects of child abuse, age, race, and the amount of education on the respondents' answers are investigated. The limitations of the age guidelines are discussed. ..
  19. Gabbard C, Cordova A, Ammar D. Estimation of reach in peripersonal and extrapersonal space: a developmental view. Dev Neuropsychol. 2007;32:749-56 pubmed
    ..In essence, these data reveal a body-scaling problem in children in estimating reach in extrapersonal space. Future work should focus on possible developmental differences in use of visual information and state of confidence. ..
  20. Perelberg R. Space and time in psychoanalytic listening. Int J Psychoanal. 2007;88:1473-90 pubmed
    ..Sexuality and sexual phantasies are at the centre of the elaboration of meaning. Furthermore, the author distinguishes between two types of interpretations, namely 'open' and 'closed'. ..
  21. Heber I, Valvoda J, Kuhlen T, Fimm B. Low arousal modulates visuospatial attention in three-dimensional virtual space. J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2008;14:309-17 pubmed publisher
    ..The results provide additional evidence for the proposed anatomical and functional overlap of the two attentional systems and indicate a modulation of visuospatial attention by the level of arousal in extrapersonal space. ..
  22. Cacola P, Gabbard C. Modulating peripersonal and extrapersonal reach space via tool use: a comparison between 6- to 12-year-olds and young adults. Exp Brain Res. 2012;218:321-30 pubmed publisher
  23. Hajjar R, Kamel H. Sexuality in the nursing home, part 1: attitudes and barriers to sexual expression. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2003;4:152-6 pubmed
    ..Nowhere is this more emphatic than in the nursing home setting. This article explores barriers to sexual expression in the nursing home setting and discusses strategies to overcome them. ..
  24. Huda W, Sterzik A, Tipnis S. X-ray beam filtration, dosimetry phantom size and CT patient dose conversion factors. Phys Med Biol. 2010;55:551-61 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results show that average D/CTDI conversion factors for a body phantom/filter combination are typically double those appropriate for a head phantom/filter combination. ..
  25. Dietrich G, Bredin J, Kerlirzin Y. Interpersonal distance modeling during fighting activities. Motor Control. 2010;14:509-27 pubmed
    ..This model captures not only coupled coordination, but more generally interaction in two-subject activities. ..
  26. Isella L, Romano M, Barrat A, Cattuto C, Colizza V, Van den Broeck W, et al. Close encounters in a pediatric ward: measuring face-to-face proximity and mixing patterns with wearable sensors. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e17144 pubmed publisher
    ..Proximity-sensing technology should be considered as a valuable tool for measuring such patterns and evaluating nosocomial prevention strategies in specific settings. ..
  27. Tashani O, Alabas O, Johnson M. Cold pressor pain responses in healthy Libyans: effect of sex/gender, anxiety, and body size. Gend Med. 2010;7:309-19 pubmed publisher
    ..Height and anxiety may have contributed to the differences between the sexes in this study. ..
  28. Delaney K, Hardy L. Challenges faced by inpatient child/adolescent psychiatric nurses. J Psychosoc Nurs Ment Health Serv. 2008;46:21-4 pubmed
    ..We also discuss the challenges nurses face within each of these safety dimensions, including those arising from fluctuating acuity, staffing formulas, surveillance of physical space, and entrenched unit cultures. ..
  29. Schachter C, Radomsky N, Stalker C, Teram E. Women survivors of child sexual abuse. How can health professionals promote healing?. Can Fam Physician. 2004;50:405-12 pubmed
    ..Women survivors of child sexual abuse want safe, accepting environments and sensitive, informed health professionals with whom to work in partnership on all their health concerns. ..
  30. Saucier D, Lisoway A, Green S, Elias L. Female advantage for object location memory in peripersonal but not extrapersonal space. J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2007;13:683-6 pubmed
  31. Ebrahimi H, Torabizadeh C, Mohammadi E, Valizadeh S. Patients' perception of dignity in Iranian healthcare settings: a qualitative content analysis. J Med Ethics. 2012;38:723-8 pubmed publisher
    ..To reach this goal, healthcare professionals should be aware of the factors that violate or preserve dignity from the patient's perspective. ..
  32. Murayama H, Shibui Y, Kawashima T, Kano N, Toratani A, Tachibana R, et al. [Homebound status and life space among Japanese community-dwelling elderly in an urban area]. Nihon Koshu Eisei Zasshi. 2011;58:851-66 pubmed
    ..Collaboration with the housing and public transportation sectors is needed to plan a comprehensive homebound reduction strategy. ..
  33. Baas U, De Haan B, Grässli T, Karnath H, Mueri R, Perrig W, et al. Personal neglect-a disorder of body representation?. Neuropsychologia. 2011;49:898-905 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings suggest that deficient body representation is the major mechanism underlying personal neglect. ..
  34. Hauschildt V, Gerken M. Effect of pasture size on behavioural synchronization and spacing in German Blackface ewes (Ovis aries). Behav Processes. 2016;124:15-22 pubmed publisher
    ..32 and 0.58; p<0.01). The sheep kept small distances on all plot sizes, thus the high degree of behavioural synchronization might be mainly attributed to the motivation for close proximity to any conspecific. ..
  35. Sakuragi S, Sugiyama Y. Effect of partition board color on mood and autonomic nervous function. Percept Mot Skills. 2011;113:941-56 pubmed
    ..These results suggest that a blue partition board would reduce task-induced subjective fatigue, in part by lowering the oppressive feeling of being enclosed during the task, possibly by increasing autonomic reactivity. ..
  36. Cocksedge S, May C. Doctors' perceptions of personal boundaries to primary care interactions: a qualitative investigation. Commun Med. 2009;6:109-16 pubmed
    ..The existence of these boundaries, and some doctors' lack of awareness of them, has educational implications if patient-centred professional role definitions are to be realistically delivered in everyday primary care. ..
  37. de Veer A, Kerkstra A. Feeling at home in nursing homes. J Adv Nurs. 2001;35:427-34 pubmed
    ..A significant amount of variation in privacy was found at the nursing home level. This implies that feeling at home is not only individually determined but can be influenced by the nursing home's management policy. ..
  38. Woogara J. Patients' privacy of the person and human rights. Nurs Ethics. 2005;12:273-87 pubmed
    ..The findings established that patients had little privacy in the wards, and that the terms 'privacy of the person' and 'dignity' are interrelated. ..
  39. Arif Z. Shame on you. Nurs Stand. 2006;20:32-3 pubmed
  40. Oh J. Stroke patients' experiences of sharing rooms with dementia patients in a nursing home. Int J Nurs Stud. 2006;43:839-49 pubmed
    ..Orientation of stroke patients regarding dementia is also suggested. ..
  41. Ladavas E, Pavani F, Farne A. Auditory peripersonal space in humans: a case of auditory-tactile extinction. Neurocase. 2001;7:97-103 pubmed
    ..This similarity suggests that analogous physiological substrates might be responsible for coding this multisensory integrated representation of peripersonal space in human and non-human primates. ..
  42. Couyoumdjian A, Di Nocera F, Ferlazzo F. Functional representation of 3D space in endogenous attention shifts. Q J Exp Psychol A. 2003;56:155-83 pubmed
    ..The implications for action-oriented models of attention are discussed. ..
  43. Young Mason J. The essential element of a restorative environment: humaneness. Clin Nurse Spec. 2005;19:269-70 pubmed
  44. Forssén A, Carlstedt G. "It's heavenly to be alone!": a room of one's own as a health-promoting resource for women. Results from a qualitative study. Scand J Public Health. 2006;34:175-81 pubmed
    ..The health resource of having such a room, and strategies for creating one, should be given attention in medical research and practice -- not least in primary care. ..
  45. Allen A. Foucault and the politics of our selves. Hist Human Sci. 2011;24:43-59 pubmed
  46. Bayatrizi Z. Mapping character types onto space: the urban-rural distinction in early statistical writings. Hist Human Sci. 2011;24:28-47 pubmed
  47. Uzzell D, Horne N. The influence of biological sex, sexuality and gender role on interpersonal distance. Br J Soc Psychol. 2006;45:579-97 pubmed
    ..In this study, we found that gender role accounts for more of the variation in IPD than the conventionally reported gender variable, sex. ..
  48. Hauge S, Kristin H. The nursing home as a home: a field study of residents' daily life in the common living rooms. J Clin Nurs. 2008;17:460-7 pubmed publisher
  49. Ladavas E, Serino A. Action-dependent plasticity in peripersonal space representations. Cogn Neuropsychol. 2008;25:1099-113 pubmed
    ..In this review functional and dynamic properties of such plasticity are reviewed in light of recent experimental findings from our own group and other laboratories. ..
  50. Bottini G, Sedda A, Ferrè E, Invernizzi P, Gandola M, Paulesu E. Productive symptoms in right brain damage. Curr Opin Neurol. 2009;22:589-93 pubmed publisher
    ..Anosognosia for hemiplegia and somatoparaphrenia may be considered as disorders of body representation (personal space)...
  51. Huberman A. Mammalian DSCAMs: they won't help you find a partner, but they'll guarantee you some personal space. Neuron. 2009;64:441-3 pubmed publisher
    ..The results unveil critical features regarding the type and scope of molecular interactions that guide neural circuit assembly in the mammalian CNS. ..
  52. Ghafouri M, Lestienne F. Contribution of reference frames for movement planning in peripersonal space representation. Exp Brain Res. 2006;169:24-36 pubmed
    ..These findings are consistent with the assumption of an anisotropic action-related representation of peripersonal space when the movement is performed in a body-centered frame. ..
  53. Bellato R, de Carvalho E. [Sharing space/time among hospitalized patients]. Rev Lat Am Enfermagem. 2002;10:151-6 pubmed
    ..Through interviews and observation, we were able to apprehend that, in spite of all the standardization of hospitalization, people weave a relational web and engender a "destination community" within the hospital. ..