Sensory Heavy Work

LA Fitness

I joined a gym back in October, not to look like Arnold Schwartzenegger, but to relax.  I can get quite wound up so anxiety and confusion ensue, which at work can be a huge problem.  In the occupational therapy world of sensory processing, “heavy work” helps me feel grounded, relaxed, and orderly in the mind.

I found this article online by PsychMamma:

In therapist lingo, “heavy work” refers to proprioceptive input. The definition of proprioceptive is “the awareness of posture, movement, and changes in equilibrium and the knowledge of position, weight, and resistance of objects as they relate to the body.” Kids with Sensory Processing Disorder sometimes seek out proprioceptive input when they are looking for a way to calm and organize their nervous system. They may seem disruptive, full of excessive energy, or even unsafe. They might purposefully crash into things (or you), jump off of things, or seem in constant motion. Jenna seems to alternate between “sensory seeking” days and “sensory avoidant” days. When she’s sensory seeking, one of my first clues is that she purposefully bumps or crashes into me (or walls & furniture). I thought I’d share with you a list of suggested “heavy work” activities that our therapist provided to us, along with some of my own additions of what we’ve found that works.

When I am really stressed, I go to the gym and work the weights with the heaviest I can stand.  One of my favorites is the leg press, which mentally  feels the most gratifying and relaxing.

I received a newsletter from the Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM–gotta love that acronym).  One of the paragraphs was an upcoming class for children with autism:

Learn the structure, visual strategies and protocol to implement an effective exercise program for individuals with autism and other learning differences. Discover exercises and routines that immediately can be implemented in your home, center or classroom. Be ready to move, and you will leave with tools to transform lives!

Here is a video from the presenter:

Okay, to give a nod to New Year’s exercise resolutions, you will likely lose weight, build muscle, and increase your endurance, because when you look good, you feel good, and when you feel good, you look great.  There’s nothing like the glow of good health.

Like the Salt n Pepa sang, Push it.  Push it real good.

About Eileen Parker 100 Articles
Support a starving writer, by buying my current book, The Weighted Blanket Guide, on Amazon. I'm a writer working on my fourth book. I live in the Twin Cities with my husband. Between us, we have four children.