I’m really proud of the work I do for children with special abilities and children on the autism spectrum. It’s incredibly rewarding personally because I am able to witness first hand the amazing difference aquatic therapy can make in these kids’ lives, and I’m just as excited for the parents, who in many cases for the first time are able to watch their children enjoy quality of life improvement from being in the water:
- Fewer episodes of repetitive behaviors
- Quality social interaction
- Improved attention span
- Better physical fitness
And these improvements are not just wishful thinking. Two recent studies listed with the National Institutes of Health, one from 2010 and the other from 2011, illustrate exactly how swim lessons are one of the most effective techniques for engaging children with special abilities:
Sensory comfort. Many children with special needs find the feeling of water comforting, as well as organizing. Aquatic therapy provides refuge from more chaotic environments.
Vestibular stimulation. Moving in the water allows full, controlled exploration of movement, which helps develop body awareness and motor learning. Our Adaptive Aquatics program can really boost motor activity comfort and confidence.
Muscle strength. Aquatic therapy provides activities that help develop muscle strength, in and out of the water.
Fun! Swim lessons are fun for kids, and enthusiasm encourages them to play, explore and develop a variety of physical and social skills. Aquatic therapy doesn’t seem like work, even though the activities are specifically designed to progress children toward important developmental goals.
If you are curious to learn more about our Adaptive Aquatics swim program, please visit our program page where you can hear what parents are saying. Or, please contact me directly – I’m happy to answer any of your questions and tell you more about the wonderful benefits children and parents can enjoy.