Well, the summer is officially over -- so hopefully you had some nice vacations and developed some cravings for the transformational knowledge.
Today's post is probably one of the most important ones that you'll ever get from me -- I'd dare to say that it should really bring the transformation of your worldview -- of the way that you think about the most specifically human of all human movements -- the walking.
I invite you to challenge one of our most natural and the most intuitively ingrained beliefs -- "achieving better walking requires practicing ... the walking"... It seems so self-evident that even without the instruction from a physical therapist the parents of children with cerebral palsy happily expose their kids to do the "walking" celebrating the contacts that a child has with the ground with cheers. It seems so safe and rewarding...
I invite you to re-think this by first taking it to a bit of an extreme: imagine that you wanted to "teach" your child to fly by throwing him or her out of the window with the enthusiastic advice: "Flap your hands, darling, and you'll soar!" -- Sounds ridiculous, right?
Well, putting a quadriplegic child with cerebral palsy through "walking" is equally ridiculous and in the long run -- more damaging. Why? -- because there is no obvious harm that one would see right away. On opposite -- it feels "right": "Wow, we are making progress; we should do more of this.."
This video is the invitation for you to be smarter than those naive thoughts and actions. Walking is a crowning achievement of the human locomotion -- the pinnacle that requires dozens and dozens of elements to be in place in order for the contact with the ground made via the moving feet to be beneficial virtuous cycle. Otherwise -- you are enthusiastically distorting your child's body being enticed by loud cheers and "expert" advice of physical therapists.
Please, find those 40 minutes of uninterrupted attention and study this video intently. There are 11 points that are discussed --each lasting just a few minutes and they are relatively richly illustrated. So even with my monotonous voice you can surely manage to keep yourself alert.
At the same time this video is an example of the intelligent due diligence approach to whatever actions and therapies you lead your child into. THINK! Even the most intuitive therapies for cerebral palsy and brain injury are loaded with hidden dilemmas that you need to be aware of if you really want to be helping your child. Otherwise you'd be repeating the fate of thousands of other children affected by quadriplegia who ended up having their bodies profoundly distorted by dumb "functional training" and the walking in particular.
I hope that this video will raise your immunity to "intuitive claims" of people who lure and seduce you into the BS of "functional training" by talking about "teaching the brain" or "re-connecting the neural pathways"... This is the complete BS and your kids deserve better than the naive dumbness..
Be smart and be inquisitive -- don't let the 'intuitive' and 'self-evident' fool you.
I apologise for the use of the language that is stronger than usual -- but whenever I think of all those kids with quadriplegic cerebral palsy who were led into the horrific distortions and suffering by their well-wishing parents -- it is really difficult to keep the neutral tone.
Please leave your comments -- don't hold it. This is a polarizing video -- it's not one of those 'informational' ones where you can just make a little mental note and proceed further. I invite you to get engaged and argumentative. If you feel that my argument is too weak -- say it, articulate your position -- I'll be absolutely happy to push this issue as far as it takes in order to make sure that it "clicks".
Thanks a lot