Let’s Get Serious about Positioning and Orthotics
Individuals on the Autism Spectrum Disorder tend to stay in asymmetric positions during the day and at night. They are at risk for body shape distortion and may be assisted into therapeutic positioning where the trunk, pelvis and legs are meticulously aligned and supported. To help with the process of learning to stay in good standing and sitting posture good orthotics and braces need to be considered.
Posture Care approach is where we help alignment of all the interrelated components of postural distortion. This approach focuses on the body and function as a whole rather than focusing solely on the most obvious distortion, seems comprehensive and logical.
Proper alignment of bones and joints is essential for stabilizing body motion during standing and walking. Individuals on ASD have a reduced perception of their body movement or shift relative to their own postural orientation and equilibrium. These individuals and their families often speak of issues such as fatigue, awkwardness, clumsiness and instability of their foot, ankle and hip joints.
It becomes clear that foot and ankle issues are key and interrelated, both affecting and being affected by overall body posture. Some individuals exhibit a decrease in dynamic control of posture in standing, walking and, at times, even in sitting.
One common posture to promote even weight bearing is a yoga Asana where one stands to and practices good overall posture with narrow and wide base, allowing the legs to experience narrow weight bearing area and then spread widely feeling and learning the difference. It is through the correct positioning and alignment of the body in these and other posture such as supine and sitting that change will occur. It takes time to adjust to new positioning so practice and patience are key elements. Regardless of the diagnosis, it is recommended to take a holistic approach to make sure our ASD individuals are making sustainable changes that can help them long term.