Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Yoga in Children's Hospitals

Physical therapists at Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha have found a different way to put pilates and yoga techniques to work.

Nate Hathaway doesn't remember a time he didn't do physical therapy. The 10-year-old had a stroke in utero. Now, physical therapists at Children's lead Nate through a series of pilates and yoga style movements. It's a way for Nate to regain strength after a stress fracture.

Nate Hathaway said "You have to balance yourself on a ball a lot and maybe you'll get a face plant or two."

The key is steady and controlled movements using bolsters, balls, even frisbees. Physical therapist Penny Warren can modify moves for each child.

Penny Warren said "It's challenging because we've zeroed in on their very weakness, their core weakness and from there they can build outward."

Therapy sessions once a week are supplemented by daily work at home. Nate's parents are encouraged after just a few months.

Nate's Mom Charity Hathaway said "He can't ride a normal two wheel bike because he falls. He doesn't have the balance ability to do it so this has made a huge difference in balance ability. We've noticed he's balancing better than he ever has."

Nate added "I walk really good now my parents say and some of my teachers have noticed."

In other words, all the hard work is paying off.

1 comment:

riNa! said...

I love this! It is my dream to some how bring yoga therapy onto the pediatric oncology wards here in San Francisco children hospitals! Do you have any tips? I would love to converse via email about what you have found that works in the hospital setting with the children and staff:)
I can't wait to hear form you.
Rina Abonnat
earthsheartbeat@gmail.com