In 2014 I worked over a 9 month period with a young girl who was referred to me by her primary school, where I had done some training sessions for parents on the importance of movement for brain development and learning.
Olivia (not her real name) had developmental delay, with a maturity level much less than her chrono
logical age. In class, she was unable to concentrate and had few friends. Here learning was also well below average for her age. She had a very ungainly walk, a slumped posture and looked as if she would fall over very easily. She could not walk up or down stairs unaided and her vestibular system was severely challenged. She had a number of retained reflexes and very low muscle tone.
The model the school and I chose to use was that I was to see Olivia every month, assess her progress and teach her learning support assistant movements that she would do with Olivia on a daily basis. This worked very well and I was amazed by the improvement in Olivia in just 3 months.
We started with just 2 passive movements and hand and foot massage. Progress was evident after just one session, and both the school and her parents were very pleased with this. Her father reported that Olivia was much stronger and had more focus. Her class teacher said that Olivia was engaging more in lessons and was much more sociable with her classmates.
By the fourth session, Olivia’s posture and balance were good, and so improved that her teacher said she actually looked taller! Her parents reported that she was much calmer at home and that her muscle tone has definitely improved, enabling her to take part in more activities with her siblings. She was more confident with her language and chatted happily to me and her learning support assistant, engaging us in imaginative stories. In class she is much calmer, more focused and thus more engaged with her learning.
Olivia continued to improve and on the basis of her progress the school now regularly ask me to work with children that they are concerned about.
Janice Graham (RMTi Instructor – UK)