Is your infant recovering from a traumatic birth injury?
Has your child been diagnosed with cerebral palsy?
Do you have a child with developmental delays or a genetic syndrome?
Does your child have an attention or sensory disorder?
Would you like to maximize your child's ability to learn?
Learning beyond limits for children
Learning is an exploratory process that's necessary for brain development. In order to make sense of ourselves in our world we all need to learn to differentiate, integrate and form well-organized patterns of movement, thought, feeling and emotion.
The exact same neuroplastic learning principles—The Nine Essentials—that can help adults move without pain, highly skilled athletes reach the next level of performance, stroke survivors regain function—can be especially transformative for children who have learning challenges and special needs.
The focus of Anat Baniel Method® NeuroMovement® lessons is on potential and possibility. Rather than forcing a child into a developmental milestone they are not ready to do yet—which only grooves in their limitation and sense of failure—ABMN lessons meet the child where they are in their development, and help them build skills from there.
ABMN lessons wake up the child's brain to new possibilities of movement and action—helping them differentiate, map and form new neural connections—leading to spontaneous, often remarkable breakthroughs in movement, thinking, emotional self-regulation and connection with others.
Positive changes can include But are not limited to:
Greater awareness of self and others
Improved mobility, strength, balance and coordination
Reduced spasticity and chronic muscular contractions
Effortless, more skillful, pleasurable movement
Better breathing, anxiety relief, sounder sleep
Calmer, improved mood
More focused attention and increased eye contact
Improved ability to match intentions to actions
ABMN is not diagnosis or injury-specific. Even if I work with two children who are the same age and have the same diagnosis—the way each child moves and organizes themselves for action is totally unique to them—because each child's acquired life experience of movement, development, response to their diagnosis or injury, and their environment is so unique.
Each lesson is truly tailored to the child as they are organized in that moment—so it is not one-size-fits-all. That said, ABMN lessons can help children who have the following conditions:
Hypertonia and Hypotonia
Stiffness and rigidity
Sensory processing issues
Traumatic birth injury
Brachial plexus injury
Post-surgery or injury limitations
Balance & coordination issues
What a lesson is like
From the very start of the lesson I connect with your child to find out what interests them and engages their curiosity, attention and learning switch.
I observe what movements your child is already able to do easily, and highlight distinctions and variations around that movement.
While I assist your child in guided, gentle, slow movements, I amplify her awareness of herself in space as she moves. Throughout the lesson I use movement with attention, gentle touch, subtlety, imagination, lots of variations and The Nine Essentials to feed your child's brain with a rich source of opportunities to perceive differences.
I will not force your child into a developmental milestone they are not ready to do yet—which only grooves in their limitation. For example, when a child is unable to come up to sitting, crawl or stand up on his own, I will avoid trying to have him be in this position until he has figured out how to do it himself, with no help or with minimal help.
If there is a small toy or a book your child likes, you can bring it to the lesson. Often children get hungry during a lesson, so having a snack on hand is a good idea. After a lesson, I recommend that the child has at least 2 hours to rest and eat.
Each lesson is unique and tailored to your child. Subsequent lessons build on the learning from the previous lesson. Lessons are no more than 30 minutes for children so as not to exhaust them. During the lesson all my attention is focused on your child. While the lesson itself is 30 minutes, I block out a 45 minute time period so that if you have any questions after the lesson, we can talk for15 minutes.
Also, I offer a free 20 minute phone consultation if you have any questions before you decide to sign up for lessons. If you are interested, please fill out the contact form at the bottom of this page and include your phone number, and in the message indicate times that you are available to talk.
I strongly suggest reading Anat Baniel's Kids Beyond Limits before you bring your child in for an intensive series of lessons. It can be a great resource to you and your child's caregivers. Each chapter is dedicated to one of The Nine Essentials with concrete examples of how to use them when relating to your child.
Scheduling an intensive series of lessons
Like learning any new language, an immersive process is more effective than a single lesson once a week. To maximize the learning I recommend an intensive series of between 5—10 lessons over a 3—14 day time period.
Ideally, I see a child for 2 lessons a day (30 minutes each lesson with at least 2 hours of down time in between for eating and resting) on a series of consecutive days. For example, I will give a child up to 8 lessons over four consecutive days. And then continue with 2 more lessons the following weekend.
I work four-day weekends: Friday—Monday to make it easier for parents who work during the week.
Depending on the child, I may recommend coming in for additional intensives, after a two week time period of rest. That two week break gives the child a chance to integrate what they learned into their everyday life.
During an intensive series, after the lessons, it's important to keep other activities low-key so the child has an opportunity to sleep, rest and integrate. If your child is in multiple therapies such as OT or PT, I recommend for the time period that they are getting an intensive series of ABMN lessons to temporarily suspend the other therapies. Having the child in multiple therapeutic modalities all at once can be exhausting and confusing for the child, especially if the approaches are very different. The other reason is so we can see what it is working and making a difference for the child more clearly if they are only experiencing one intervention at a time.
If you have questions or concerns before you schedule lessons for your child and you would like to be on my email list, send me a message. Also, if you are interested in a free, 20 minute phone consultation, please leave your phone number and in your message indicate what times are good for me to contact you. I am happy to answer any questions you might have.
Above, this video features the story of Nash, who had global brain damage at birth. Allie & Wyatt, his parents, share his journey of development. They saw significant changes in Nash when he started getting Anat Baniel Method (ABM) NeuroMovement lessons. Nash has progressed so far and he started walking before his 3rd birthday!
Above, Carla Oslwald Reed, ABMN Practitioner/Trainer and Pediatric PT, explains some differences between ABMN and Physical Therapy.
Watch above video of Anat Baniel working with a child with brachial plexus injury.