Okay so this may sound like a strange statement, but honestly, I have met people that question some of the pictures and videos that I post on my website. They make statements like “So what he’s sitting on a stool!” and “Yeah okay he stood up, but your hands were on him the whole time! How do I know you didn’t help him?” These people may sound rude and maybe even ignorant for questioning a picture of a disabled child sitting or standing, but really they are only asking because they don’t understand the disability or the way the rehabilitation works
So I decided it’s time to clear a few things up and maybe help change some people’s opinions and thoughts on the Conductive Education process.
Let’s use this picture as an example; here is a little boy with cerebral palsy sitting on a bench whist holding onto a wooden ladder. Now he looks pretty stable right? Well, what would you think if I said, without the arm splints he is wearing he wouldn’t be able to stabilise himself against the ladder? He has to remind himself to squeeze his hands round the ladder, to push his feet into the floor and to lift his head up to keep his back straight at every moment he is sitting there independently.
2. Yes, there are many pictures of me holding a child, but this doesn’t mean I am physically helping them stand. These children are most definitely doing all of the things in the pictures themselves, but sometimes they may not feel confident enough to do it alone, or may just need a helping hand to keep their body in that standing position. My hands are always helping children for a specific reason.
Lets look at another picture. This little girl is standing at the wooden ladder, again she is also wearing arm splints, as these help her to maintain her balance. Now, what else can you see? I am touching her right ankle, yes, but what you cannot see is that I am barely putting any pressure on her. This is just to remind her that I am still there to help her foot if suddenly it comes off the ground. The other person you can see helping her is in front (that lovely lady is her mummy.) Now, she is holding onto her arms, this is to help her keep her hands on the ladder because if her muscles start to relax, her hands would come loose on the ladder and she would fall to the side. This little girl is standing and reminding every single muscle in her body to work and help keep herself balanced.
So that’s it! Remember, just because someone’s hands are on a child helping them, does not necessarily mean they are carrying out that activity for them. The next time you sit on a stool, remind yourself that in order to help keep you in that position there are many muscles flexing and contracting without you consciously realising it. Now imagine what it would be like if you have to continually tell those muscles to do their job, that will give you a small insight into why just sitting on a stool for a child with a disability can be so hard!
Thank you for reading, please comment below with any questions and I hope this blog was insightful.