"Thrifty" Fascia vs "Lavish" Brain+Muscles approaches to cerebral palsy therapies introduced

I came back home a week ago after nearly 3 months on the road ... fortunately my family still recognized me... I guess it's the haircut ... :-)

Tons of materials accumulated during these months -- the teachings, the presentations and the comparisons of before/afters to do...

This year's round of assessment was very rewarding -- the ball rolling indeed works as expected -- probably even better! The improvements of the connections within the vertebral columns and the ability to connect the 'velcro attachments' of the shoulder blades -- are really quite amazing breakthroughs..

So my call to all of you esteemed ABR Parents-Therapists -- please do not skip learning courses... Ball rolling techniques are  continually upgraded empowering you to become a lot more effective and efficient... There is one thing that one cannot buy in this life -- it's time... and in the development of the growing child with cerebral palsy -- 1 hour of work done this year is probably worth at least 2-3 hours done next year --from the perspective of developmental yield...

I am going to provide you with a lot more of the technical teachings in a format of videos and practical tips in the forthcoming months -- we already accumulated tons of such teaching material -- and working through sorting it out...

So -- there is going to be a lot more opportunities for you to progress via doing your homework better.

However, direct hands-on teaching by an expert ABR trainer -- is always a major shortcut for you. That's how you can develop your skills faster and get those skills in action -- boosting your kids' development...

I started sorting out the presentations we did  with Mark during the visit to Hawaii -- in this post I am offering you the one that we did in the Rehabilitation Hospital of Hawaii.

It is far shorter than the main workshop that we delivered as part of the Pacific Rim Conference on Disabilities -- but maybe there is some advantage to this more compact format.

Couple of preliminary cover notes...

  • Unlike the main ABR workshop at the Pacific Rim Conference on Disabilities  that was filmed with a professional camera by a videographer -- this on is filmed using a good old Flip  placed stationary on a mini-tripod with a superwide view of the entire room.

            I guess you'd realize that the quality is not supergood. However, it's not too bad either.

            First, most of the presentation is based on the powerpoint slides -- so I have inserted          them into the video -- making it a lot easier to follow the narrative.

            Second, I must say that the Flip is surprizingly good in recording the sound   considering the tough circumstances of filming.

            So I hope that your viewing experience is going to be reasonable enough to allow you        to concentrate on a content...

  • The really interesting part is the fact that only through the circumstances of this particular presentation I understood how much of routine challenges an immersion of the new paradigm and methods face -- even when there is a genuine interest and goodwill.

            Let me paint a broader picture to help you to see the context...

            First of all -- the MD who is in charge of a Rehab Hospital team attended the             workshop that we did few days earlier and was very positive and receptive. He was   the one who actually "send" a group of PTs and OT -- 12-15 people -- to learn from         us.

            So, there was no resistance -- only goodwill. But... then the reality kicks in..

            Every therapsit has a significant workload scheduled days in advance...

            Only now I realized how significant are those logistical and administrative constraints within the existent healthcare model..

Frankly, a physical therapist in many instances has no more freedom than a worker at the assembly line -- it's a conveyor belt! Patient after patient, who have to receive a type of therapy that has been pre-aproved by the insurance companies and by referring physicians who are absolutely removed from any hands-on work with the patients..

How on Earth even the most enthusiastic and thoughtful individuals inside this profession are going to progress beyond the routines that they've been doing for decades!?

So to cut the story short -- the only time available was ... the lunch hour..

Well, it's a bit weird -- to introduce the ground-breaking concepts to the chewing crowd... :-)

However, on the one hand, even opera singers sometimes perform in front of the audience that eats and drinks, right? :-)

On the other hand, one can entertain the thought that the digestion of the "food for one's stomach" might facilitate the digestion of the "food for one's mind"....

I do not have much science to bakc this up -- but why not? :-)

On top of that, somewhere half way through the presentation ... the fire alarm went off! ...But as you all know -- I am loud and passionate enough not to be bothered by such minor inconveniences ...


So here we go ... this is a compact version of the presentation that introduces 2 key ideas:

  • Connective tissue focus instead of the mainstream brain and muscles focus in interpretation of Cerebral Palsy
  • Transition to the "Thrifty" Rehabilitation and Therapy based on connective tissue emphasis vs. the "Lavish" one that defines the therapies for Cerebral Palsy and brain-injury rehabilitation modalities today.

Part 1.

Part 2

Besides of going through these videos yourself I do encourage you to invite your PT, OT etc. to watch it as well... Hopefully, that will help your future communication with them...

Your comments are most appreciated. The more you say -- the more we'd be able to adjust and adapt the style and emphasis of presenation to help your 'inner game' development the most...

ABR message finally strikes a chord with medical pros

Long time – no see… Once again – contrary to my best intentions there was a gap in getting stuff published on this blog. The theorists of blogging say that nothing is more detrimental to the readership than irregularity and unpredictability…

Not that I have run out of the things to share – pretty much the opposite – but casual writing seems to be going for me only when I am out of the field work…

Anyway – I hope that blogging sporadically is still better than silence..

Well, first of all the last 7 weeks have been very packed.

  • In March I went to Singapore to re-film the last bits of the long overdue extended course on Super-Soft Ball Rolling Massage – the problem is always the same: by the time I finish one version there are so many upgrades to the technique itself and teachings that the entire course starts feeling awkward and outdated. Even though I realize that it could always be labeled as a ‘beta’ release 1.0 with subsequent updates –it doesn’t work for me  –  to the frustration of my production team I end up with another major overhaul.

However, finally it looks that the Super-Soft Ball Rolling Massage technique enters into the maturity phase with clear distinction between the skill levels – so I am feeling a lot better about the release of the intro course. Hopefully by the end of the summer  we’ll get everything finished – as you all know too well – I am not known for lack of thoroughness :-)

  • Then there was a training session in Montreal. Very encouraging.

On the one hand, excellent progresses related to the evolution of the dorsal compartments (the back; vertebral column etc. ) – and respectively tons of material worthy of quite impressive “before/afters”.

On the other hand – I am very happy to have achieved a next milestone in the development of Super-Soft Ball Rolling Technique – the increased volumetric response, which integrates the benefits of the 3Q and the ball rolling at the same time.

As I am saying that – I realize that I have uploaded the video “ABR Technique Essence” to the Vimeo library but completely overlooked embedding into the blog:

Here it is.

On a practical side – I strongly encourage all of you to learn the recent upgrades of the Ball Rolling – the “Intense Technique” and the “Submerged Technique”.

I recommend it wholeheartedly – go ahead and sign up for the summer trainings if you haven’t done so yet– because these technique upgrades are going to be a major boost in the efficacy of your homework – at least doubling it…

  • Next big thing – me and Mark Driscoll (our principal research guy) – have conducted a 4-hour workshop at the Pacific Rim International Conference on Disabilities – http://www.pacrim.hawaii.edu/ – titled: “Thrifty” Rehabilitation  – Home- Based and Family-Centered Treatment of Cerebral Palsy.

There were about 30 professional attendees – MDs, PTs, OTs – who specialize in Cerebral Palsy.

Frankly, over the years of life at the fringes being labeled as “alternative” I am used to the resistance and certain arrogance of the medical community towards “unofficial” newcomers.

Well, this time was a refreshing difference.

It appears that our duo with Mark finally managed to strike the right chord and engage the medical audience really deeply. Four hours is a long period of time – but the attention never waned.

I think that finally we have found a winning formula



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Hip Subluxation in Cerebral Palsy-Video 5-Specifics

I guess it is more than a time to proceed from general reviews of hip subluxation in Cerebral palsy videos to the specifics.


Video 5 turned out to be quite long -- so I divided it in 2 parts -- but eventually decided to add a summary as well -- that's Part 3.

In these videos I actually go point by point over the original questions, observations and concerns that were voiced in the original 6 min video by Emma's mom.

So even though the videos are quite long I think they are not too difficult to watch since any single topic is covered within a  few minutes max. I hope that in these videos I've managed to illustrate how the concepts introduced in the earlier videos blend together and provide a relatively straightforward framework for analysis of an individual case.

Of course, in an individual case of your child there could be some variations of the angles or of the dominant directions of legs mobility response -- however, the essence always remains the same: One needs to use a transanatomical framework to understand the full scope of transition.

I think that the main practical takeaway from these videos is the idea of evaluating your child's evolution through the chart that takes into account multiple aspects of the evolution in the pelvic region and within lower extremities-- including the percentage measurement of femur head alignment  in respect to the acetabulum but seeing it only as a single entry in a much larger matrix of changes.

I hope this helps.

I feel that these video series on hip subluxation in cerebral palsy give a comprehensive coverage of the subject -- to the point that "there shouldn't be any questions left"...  However, being realistic I am sure there are further questions and I am  looking forwards for receiving them -- because from my perspective of a broad "umbrella" I might be overlooking some of the very specific concerns that you might have.

As the final word for these series I want to express my gratitude to Team Emma for their willingness to go beyond "privacy" and to embrace a collective good for all the parents in a similar situation by making these video series possible. I think that some expression of your appreciation in the comments to this post will be much appreciated by Emma's parents.

P.S. Please do not forget to press Facebook 'Like' button --so more people can benefit from getting a little bit of rational outlook influx towards this emotionally charged issue of hip subluxation.


P.P.S. Do not forget that the best way is to actually to click on the 'ABR on Vimeo' link above -- and then you can actually download this and other videos from Vimeo website. Then you do not need to deal with streaming delays and play interruptions 'that some of you mentioned before

Video 4. Hip Subluxation -Why So Much Attention?--The Truths and the Myths

It's time for the video # 4..

As I mentioned in the overview I tried to cover some of the most wide-spread worries and concerns addressing them with as much of a bird's eye view as possible.

Unfortunately, too often there is so much hysteria being pumped up about the hip subluxation issue by orthopedic profession -- that at some point one might get absolutely swirled by all the pressure and scare-mongering.

I hope the video 4. "Hip Subluxation- Why So Much attention? -- The truths and the myths" is going to help you to get out of being scared mode and panicked cries for help -- and towards being able to approach this complex issue rationally and consciously.


I assure you that you have all the necessary intellectual capacity and background to be able to figure out the truths from the myths -- all you need is a bit of help.

I hope these videos will bring you closer to this state of having a clear and rational understanding of what's going on with your child and become confident of your own capacity to deal with challenges should they come your way.

In the previous post I already mentioned that it was difficult to keep this video short -- I couldn't keep myself on the rails all the time and took several tangential educational detours as well.

Hope you do not mind.

So frankly -- I do not know which video is better -- so I put both on. Your feedback is most appreciated and is going to help me to do better videos for you in the future.

Well, that's pretty much it...

P.S. Please do not forget to press Facebook 'Like' button --so more people can benefit from getting a little bit of rational outlook influx towards this emotionally charged issue of hip subluxation.


P.P.S. Do not forget that the best way is to actually to click on the 'ABR on Vimeo' link above -- and then you can actually download this and other videos from Vimeo website. Then you do not need to deal with streaming delays and play interruptions 'that some of you mentioned before

Hip Subluxation in Cerebral Palsy Video Series Overview

What is the best way to defuse fear and confusion that you are constantly being exposed to by medical establishment? – Knowledge.
To be precise – not any knowledge but parent-centered advanced knowledge.
I feel it is important to distinguish parent-centered advanced knowledge from a diluted and dumbed down versions of medical textbooks that you find on ‘official’ websites on Cerebral Palsy.

Hip Subluxation Video Series intend to do exactly that –give you a comprehensive perspective on the subject that is exploited most often by fear-mongers.

I have prepared 8 videos – each of them at least 30 minutes long covering a subject of hip subluxation extensively, digging deep and going broad in order to build it into the entire context of your CP child’s development – especially for quadriplegic kids.

Yes, it’s a lot of information and yes, you need to do your homework encouraging yourself on making an effort to absorb and digest it. However, considering all the emotional and financial costs that fear and confusion around hip subluxation and other ‘scary’ issues related to legs alignment and mobility impose on you – I think this homework is going to be a worthy investment of your time.

Continue reading "Hip Subluxation in Cerebral Palsy Video Series Overview" »

Hip Subluxation in Cerebral Palsy – addressing the parents concerns. Part 1.

Not so long ago I have received a wonderful video  with questions about hip subluxation and transitions in the mobility and alignment of the legs. The video is compact – about 6 min long, it shows impressive observational ability of a mother – awareness of all sorts of little details; but at the same time, within these short 6 min it covers the range of  questions and concerns that I hear from many of the other parents being asked over and over again.

I’ve been granted a generous permission to use this video and my answers to the questions asked as the teaching material that will benefit a great number of parents.

Obviously, I am going to stretch my explanations and comments much beyond the original 6 minutes – so I’d probably end up dividing it into several parts.

In the review of the video – I have separated the observations from the statements – which in turn are divided into explanations/ analytical statements and focus points of concern /questions

Since there are 23 observations and 19 analytical statements/questions/ issues of concern voiced by Emma’s mom– even if I spend a few minutes of comments per item– my video will end up being really long. But a number of these issues are so important for each and every of you that I have to dig deeper and show you a broader perspective as well. Obviously – that will add up the video length minutes.

Hence my  first suggestion to you is to have a look at the original 6 min video in its entirety to have a complete overview of the situation and to align yourself with it.

For your convenience I’ve added the captions and actually labeled all the observations and questions.

Continue reading "Hip Subluxation in Cerebral Palsy – addressing the parents concerns. Part 1." »

Cerebral Palsy – Giving a Boot To Neurological Dogmas. Part 1

In many countries New Year is the time when people throw away everything old and useless that accumulated in a house with the idea of having a fresh start and letting the new things in.

I admire the tradition and decided to follow suite – the first post of 2011 is about flushing  down the drain the outdated neurological dogmas that paralyze and lead astray professionals and parents of kids with Cerebral Palsy alike.  

Disclaimer – big and bold: everything you are going to read is my own extremely biased opinion that is most unlikely to be supported by qualified medical professionals.

I’d actually go even further and say this – to leave no doubts about my extreme biasness:

In my opinion, “brain-based” approach to Cerebral Palsy that treats ‘brain injury’, i.e. damage to a part of the brain,  and ‘Cerebral Palsy’ – disorder of posture and movement/failure in reaching biomechanical developmental milestones -- as the interchangeable synonyms – is the most important obstacle that stifles the progress of physical rehabilitation and freezes current abysmal status quo.

In other words, a neurological paradigm is: a blindfold over your eyes; sticky glue, quicksand and rocky terrain underneath your feet; iron gloves over your hands; plugs in your years and shackles around your feet  – all of these in a single nasty package… So you are welcome to figure your chances of success if you are  ever lured by

In Part 2, I am going to go over 16 most obvious reasons why neurology leads you astray and why the guidance by neurologists who define the discourse of today’s interpretation and approach to Cerebral Palsy is the worst and most unproductive thing that is responsible for astonishing lack of progress in Cerebral Palsy therapies over the last 100 years.

I’ve been thinking about these flaws for years and collected quite a pile – but in order to spare you from a nearly endless list – I gave myself a time line: I put the kitchen timer on 10 minutes and proceeded to write down as many stubs exposing the  fundamental flaws of neurology and brain-centered paradigm for Cerebral Palsy as possible.

By the moment  the timer went “Bzzz” – I was on reason # 16.

Well, If I were to give myself ½ hour – I’d  probably come up with a list that would have been three times as long– but I think even a basic version will do to begin with.

However, before proceeding to Part 2 – the actual list – I wanted to immerse you in the context of the case – I hope that’ll give you an improved perspective.


I do not know whether it’s my nerdy self but I find this picture incredibly funny and strangely appealing.

This is the cover of Harper’s Magazine and it has been on my office’s kitchen table since October but every time I walk past it – I can’t help smiling… The white-haired man with the badge: “Hello my name is Sigmund”, who is being kicked out from a gathering as an unwelcome trespasser by a muscle-bound security,   is obviously Dr. Sigmund Freud.

Continue reading "Cerebral Palsy – Giving a Boot To Neurological Dogmas. Part 1" »

2011 New Year Greetings --THE OPTIMISM ADVANTAGE

The New Year is a very special time  – it’s a time of wishes and hopes. There is something about this ‘click’ of the calendar that switches on the inner optimist in us – no matter what type of personality we are in our everyday lives.

And today’s post and my most sincere wish for all of you in this new year is exactly about that –  keeping this inner optimism engaged all the time.

Smile_learned optimnism

In 2011 I wish all of you to turn the internal optimism selector switch  into the “On” position and to disable the “Off” button.

I wish you to improve your ability to enjoy the moment, to fall in love with a journey of making life for your kids better without being anxious over the long-term outcome of “final success”.

I wish you to give yourself praise and to celebrate wholeheartedly whatever small  achievements  and micro-steps of progress your child manages to reach…

I know all these are universal truths perceived by many as banalities and an empty wishful thinking that does not hold water against the storms of the reality…

However, I’d dare to encourage you to make an effort and even when it feels difficult to keep your  optimistic stance – still to keep trying and keeping your internal ‘reality perception’ filters switched into the “Positive” mode.

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New Ideas Avalanche – some unexpected Cinderella stories

Merry Christmas everybody!

My thanks and deepest gratitude for keeping up with my writing, which has been sporadic at best this year – I hope I’ll do better in 2011 (no tongue in cheek :-).

My extra apologies for disappearing off the scene for the last few weeks. I want to assure you that my intention/ commitment to keep this blog alive and vibrant is as strong as ever.
But even the strongest of commitments to write regularly had no chance of withstanding the avalanche of new discoveries and realizations that fell on me over the last 3-4 weeks....quite literally...

The flow of ideas has been so intense that until now  I am  having trouble understanding / figuring out – what  is happening ? -Have I stumbled upon an unexpected goldmine or am I going to be swept away by the avalanche of the ever-growing diversity of options?

In short, the new realizations are going to lead to the new pool of strategies, techniques and tools that are as large if not larger in variety then entire ABR arsenal developed until today.


Because instead of one single Cinderella turning princess– fascia – that ABR has been committed to for the last 10 years, there are 2 more Cinderella stories that suddenly started to unfold really rapidly.

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Cerebral Palsy and Biomechanical Diet. 7 Essential Commonalities Between the Biomechanical ‘Feeding’ and Strategic Nutritional Plans.

Cerebral Palsy and Biomechanical Diet. 7 Essential Commonalities Between the Biomechanical ‘Feeding’ and Strategic Nutritional Plans. 

In the previous post I have introduced the idea of the Biomechanical Diet for the children with Cerebral Palsy together with concepts of ‘mechanical foods’ and ‘biomechanical nutrition’…

I must say, that I was positively surprised by the response and how well this idea connected and took hold. Thanks a lot for your comments and observations – they really help a lot in shaping the ABR educational message.

Today I’ll take these ideas of ‘Biomechanical  Nutrition’ a bit further by showing  7 essential commonalities between the biomechanical ‘feeding’ and strategic nutritional plans that might help you to integrate the notion of the Biomechanical Diet deeper and might be helpful on the level of implementing it in practice for your child with special needs.

Of course, the commonalities do not end with these 7 – but this scope provides a good start.

So, in order to make navigation easier –I have arranged the  most obvious commonalities between the Biomechanical Diet  and Nutritional Metabolic Diet into a numbered list that is by no means exhaustive: 

 1. Spontaneous doesn’t work. ‘By design’ approach is always superior to the ‘by default’ one.

If you want best results – you need to design the specific diet targeting the specific metabolic needs of a person taking into account the individual aspects of the ability to eat, to digest, to process and  to absorb different foods as well as the ability to evacuate of byproducts and ‘leftovers’. As the parents of Cerebral Palsy kids you are very well aware how disregarding just one of these components might cause tons of trouble.

The same thing is true for the Biomechanical Diet – if you want  the best results and if you want to stimulate your child’s development to the maximum possible potential – you cannot afford being aimlessly floating and simply hoping that things will turn out to better by themselves or via sporadic ‘treatments’.

Continue reading "Cerebral Palsy and Biomechanical Diet. 7 Essential Commonalities Between the Biomechanical ‘Feeding’ and Strategic Nutritional Plans. " »