Therapeutic Handling Lab Part II
We had the second part of our therapeutic handling lab on Friday morning. We all showed up at the place and we were about to get started when the lights went out all over Germantown, TN. They stayed off for at least 30 minutes. We literally started watching occupational therapy sessions by flash-light. We were divided up into groups and we got to do some therapeutic handling techniques on the children. I don’t have any pictures since we were seeing actual patients and HIPPA is a scary beast.
One of the things I really liked about this lab is that it gives us more tools to use as rebuttal. I don’t know about y’all, but I get tired of hearing:
I) It looks like it’s just common sense. Why are you getting a master’s degree in something that I could do without training?
II) All you are doing is playing with the child. Why should you get paid so much for that?
The answer is – we are using play as the area of occupation that the child finds most meaningful at this point in his/her life. However, we aren’t just “playing”. We have advanced knowledge of anatomy & physiology, kinesiology & biomechanics, the neuromuscular system, and more. We’re working with all sorts of techniques you may not realize. Postural stability, enhanced proprioception, weight-bearing, joint compression, sensory integration, vestibular maturation, contracture prevention, ribcage expanding, using key points of control to facilitate movement patterns, etc.
Speaking of ribcage handling! I never knew that children are born with high ribcages, and that through natural movement/development, the ribcages move downward. Children who for whatever reason don’t get this movement may end up with high, small ribcages. The therapist can do ribcage handling to help facilitate the downward movement of the ribcage as well as the expansion of the ribcage, to allow the child to breathe better. Pretty neat!