Thursday, March 8, 2012

Double Duty Therapy

Today, I had my first personal training session (AKA, torture session) that I received for Christmas. As I was suffering through it, trying not to think about how much I disliked what I was doing and how much it hurt, I was thinking about whether or not these things could be used in a sensory way. I mean, sure, it was tough for me, but that just means that when Ethan was in the middle of one of those "engine too high" moments, that maybe I could break one of those exercise type things out.
You can take exercise bands that you normally would do the above exercise with and instead, wrap it around the bottom of the two front chair legs and have your child with sensory needs use that band to stretch out, or wiggle and bounce their feet and legs and they will still be able to focus because the band will absorb all the movements.

On the left is the typical triceps exercise and on the right is an exercise that Ethan has done in the past when he used to wiggle around in his seat. He would only do about 10, but sometimes if the whole class was wiggly, the teacher would just have everyone do the chair dips. After all, it certainly is not going to hurt the kids and if it helps the refocus, what does it hurt?!!

Above is the typical stretching exercise you would do after exercising, but have you ever done the Wilbarger Bushing Protocol and joint compressions? When Ethan was first diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder, this was one of the first strategies given to us by an occupational therapist. we would brush his skin briskly with that hospital brush up there in the corner...his arms, his torso, his back, his legs, and his feet..then we would literally pull on his joints...his shoulders, his elbows, his wrists, each joint in his hands and fingers, we would bend his legs up to stretch his hip, stretch his knees, flex his ankles and his toes. Believe it or not, it helped. We started off doing it three times a day and eventually got down to only once a day. We don't do it at all anymore. He doesn't really like to be touched, so it is not something he misses. If anything, he likes to be squished...but he definitely does not miss the brushing.

What are some double duty therapy items that you have used?

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