Folks have asked me what the Monster actually does when we go to gymnastics each week. I’ve mentioned before about how he goes every Thursday, but I don’t talk too much about what he actually does when he’s there. And… I don’t necessarily want folks having this image in their heads that my kid’s getting ready eventually for the Olympics.
I mean, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but… no. (Plus let’s be honest here. If he’s going to play a sport, I’d rather take him out on the ice with me.)
The major goal of his going to gymnastics is actually physical therapy. When he made the transition from Infants and Toddlers to the schools, they ruled that he was not sufficiently delayed in his gross motor skills to mandate their giving him therapy as part of his IEP. While he does mostly fine, he’s still clearly not quite on par with his normally abled classmates.
So, once a week, he gets the chance to go play on the gymnastics equipment at Rebounders. The program he’s in – I Can Do It Too – has a few folks who work at the gymnastics facility paired with students at Towson who are in programs geared towards special education. His specific schedule is targeted towards the areas where he’s weak – balance, arm-strength, et cetera – and they concentrate on making it fun for him while trying to give him a chance to catch up in the gross motor arena.
So he has been getting better. In recent weeks, he’s been working up to getting himself to do flips over a bar (I believe with his feet working against the wall). His specific shadow reported to me yesterday that when hanging from the rings on his own, this week was the first time he was able to lift his knees to his chest and hold them there, so there’s massive improvement over when he started.
Now, as much as I’d love for the school to be giving him PT, I have to admit that I think this is far, far better for him…