By Interactive Metronome - December 1, 2014
Alexander Lopez, JD, OT/L , Executive Director and President
June Kume Kick, PhD, DPT Research Director – Touro College
Type of Professional:
Occupational Therapist and Physical Therapist (Respectively)
Years using IM: 1
Facility Name: Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc.
Location: Oakdale, New York
Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, and other motor, social and sensory impairments.
What made you look into IM?
I was looking for a therapeutic intervention that would enhance my model of intervention. Our intervention seeks to improve occupational performance with complimentary theoretical approaches. We utilize a combination of interrelationship, biomechanical, sensory integration models and motor control theories to maximize psychosocial and motor skills necessary for performance in play and sports. Interactive Metronome® was introduced as IM training may assist in advancing performance deficits in visuomotor control skills, language skills and attention skills.
Tell us about your business (patients served, size of practice, services offered, how often you use IM and IM-Home in daily practice):
Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc. provides access to sports and fitness activities for children with disabilities. We have designed a program utilizing the best evidence in mentoring, neuroscience, exercise science and occupational therapy. The program design includes a holistic approach that fosters positive personal, social and physical development. Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc. is designed for children with and without disabilities who do not have access to typical sports, play and recreational activities. The program is designed to “level the playing field” for youth who are alienated or deprived of physical activities. Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc. provides free or low cost services to minimize the cost of care.
The vision of Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc. is to be a “Center of Excellence” in providing professional science-driven, and evidence-based interventions that maximize a typical child and/or exceptional child’s potential to engage and participate in essential activities of daily living that include play, sports, fitness; promote advocacy for the inclusion of sports and play for all children; and provide public service and support for access to sports programs.
We see 16 clients a week in our program. Inclusive Sports and Fitness, Inc. is not about the number of clients we see, but the quality of care we provide. We purposely limit our program to 16 children. We are an outcomes-oriented program and pride ourselves on quality and not quantity. We work with our children until they can be mainstreamed into typical sports programs.
Children are seen twice a week for twelve weeks. Each intervention time is one hour and a half. During the each intervention, the children engage in a sensory-based circuit of activity that moves from attention states to arousal states. The children receive IM interventions during each of the cycles.
We are currently researching the effects of ADL, motor and social performance in our composite program.
IM-Home incorporation and use:
We have not moved to IM-Home at this time. I will be advancing the IM-Home intervention in the summer. We are acting on a research protocol, so we have not included IM-Home.
What is your favorite thing about Interactive Metronome? And IM-Home (if used)?
The IM is an excellent resource to help children develop performance skills necessary for playing sports. IM facilitates the activation of sensory-processing systems that are crucial for playing sports. We utilize the IM to assist in improving balance, coordination, muscle tone, rhythm and awareness of the body in space. We believe it plays a key role in organizing motor input, output and performance.
Tips for other IM Providers:
I believe that IM has great potential, but I think therapists should look consider advancing the use of the IM to engage their clients. I have used it with basketball equipment, surfboards and golf.
Check out all of Alex and June’s great work here.