Physical activity and intelligence: it happens in the brain
Everything that the child mobilizes to manipulate objects, move around or come into contact with others, boosts his brain activity. Being active promotes learning skills, problem-solving, and alertness.
In other words, it makes you smarter! But, as Sibylle Gonzalez, a neurologist working with dying children, reminds us, this is not the only key to development. Children with very little mobility can have good cognitive performance.
And as with everything, nothing should be forced. Physical activity can be harmful if the child is defeated or if the rules are too demanding: he can lose his motivation and his self-esteem.
Diagnostic aid and rehabilitation
“Physical activity can be revealing in children with dys , especially dyspraxia, analyzes Sibylle Gonzalez. Sometimes a child camouflages his dyspraxia or compensates for his disorder on a daily basis, but when he has to provide great precision in sport, he can no longer.
Conversely, a child who is clumsy in everyday life can show good athletic discipline, proof that he focuses his attention thanks to a strong motivation. ”
The sports context is favorable to concentration according to the neurologist: “In the case of children with dys, physical activity can facilitate learning through procedural memory, that which unconsciously allows the acquisition of motor skills and gestures. usual to automate certain actions.
Sport can play the role of re-educating learning, in more fun, motivating, and less restrictive context than school tasks. ”
Better than moving: feeling!
In the event of a severe handicap, it is even more essential to make the most of all motor possibilities. “Each progress is born of small successive advances,” explains Jean-Paul Pes, psychomotor therapist for high-level athletes.
To move towards more mobility, it is important to become aware of its sensations, however minimal they may be, to allow a lasting gestural realization, because a movement is all the better recorded when it is felt ”.
“Moving is a matter of self-awareness, confirms Suzanne Robert-Ouvray, emotional psychomotor therapist and psychotherapist. The moving body sets in motion new circuits in the brain. Coordination and sensations are refined, and in this sense, physical activity becomes a treatment.
And to increase the effects, you have to put the child in good condition. Parents can buy a hammock and rock their child, a muscle and neurological relaxation that promotes learning. ”
Exercises to do with your disabled child
A notebook of exos was proposed by Suzanne Robert-Ouray.
He misunderstands the world of objects
With a multi-handicapped child, we can pass a spiked ball along his legs, make him take a very light then heavy object to feel the difference.
Actions that increase his sensory confidence, that is to say, the ability to put his sensations in opposition to nourish his senses. When he sees a pebble or a foam ball on the ground, he will anticipate the material to know if he can shoot in it, or not! He thus increases his capacity to act.
He doesn’t understand the space
For a child who stumbles, you can place a stool with three steps and help him to climb them or put a small obstacle such as a broom to step over it. This is to ensure that the learning of obstacles becomes automatic, so that the child is located in space, anticipates. He will be more open, more able to look at what is going on around him.
He cannot reproduce a gesture
We can act with exercises that we do in front of the child. A handle of a door in front of him is opened showing him the movement and the effect. This mobilizes in his brain ” mirror neurons ” which are an aid for learning real movement.
We can also show him the video of a man running, swimming, climbing, naming the action so that the child coordinates the image with the word. We then speak of identification: the child puts himself in the place of the person in action. And seeing the movements improves your body awareness.