How physiotherapy helps children in school

A child struggling to sit up straight, concentrate in school

Picture this: your child can not sit still at the desk or during carpet time at school.

It’s not that they’re a badly behaved child, or defiant in any way. It’s just that sitting at a desk is actually really hard work.

In order to sit up straight, your little one must engage their core muscles over a long period of time, whilst concentrating and perhaps holding a pen and paper.

Some children simply don’t have the core strength or the endurance to do it. So either they become a wriggler – child who is constantly moving in order to maintain their posture (think about how at gym you squirm and move to make a plank easier); or, they become a melting candle – sliding down into their chair and resting on the desk to get external support for their very tired muscles.

It becomes impossible to concentrate and participate in class, and your child falls behind, or gets labelled as a child who doesn’t follow instructions.

This happens all the time, and it’s something that paediatric physiotherapy can really help with.

How does paediatric physio help?

  • We help children develop the strength and endurance that they need in order to sit upright over a prolonged period and concentrate at school
  • We help children develop the strength and coordination they need in their trunk, shoulders, and hands in order to hold a pencil and write properly
  • We help children develop the confidence, strength, endurance and skills they need in order to participate on the playground.

We do this by strengthening weak muscles, stretching tight muscles and teaching new patterns of coordination.

Who is paediatric physio for?

Paediatric physio benefits children with:

  • ADHD
  • Poor coordination
  • Excessive clumsiness
  • Low muscle tone
  • Weak core
  • Joint and muscle sprains and aches
  • Developmental delay
  • Developmental coordination disorder
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Spina bifida
  • Joint hypermobility
  • Juvenile arthritis
  • Genetic conditions
  • Broken bones and post-fracture rehabilitation

Play based therapy

Paediatric physiotherapy puts an emphasis on strengthening and teaching movement through play and use a variety of toys and therapy equipment to achieve this.

Signs your little one could benefit from physiotherapy

  • Struggling to sit still or sit up straight at the desk or on the carpet
  • Struggling to concentrate
  • Struggling with fine motor skills
  • Struggling to keep up with other children on the playground
  • Complaining of being tired
  • Struggling to finish tasks in the classroom
  • Complaining of aches and pains

Worried that your little one has some of these signs? Reach out to your local paediatric physio for more guidance.

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