BRAIN GYM - What is it?

Brain Gym  is a program of 26 physical movements that enhance learning & performance in all areas. Developed in the 1970's through the work of educators, Dr. Paul and Gail Dennison, in response to their quest to seek more effective ways to help children & adults with learning difficulties. Brain Gym is an innovative approach to learning, based on extensive research regarding on the role that physical movements play in enhancing learning abilities. Brain Gym has received world wide praise & is now used in more than 80 countries, taught in thousands of schools. It has also found its way into the corporate world. Brain Gym is similar to other movement programs in that Brain Gym helps to increase flexibility & coordination, but differs from other programs in that it provides specific activities designed to facilitate brain function for the physical skills required for activities such as reading, writing & spelling.  Sporting activities also benefit from including Brain Gym activities as part of ‘warm-up and warm-down’ sessions.



How does Brain Gym work?

In nature,the brain's neural pathways & connections are developed through movement. Brain Gym works by promoting specific movement experiences which assist in facilitating optimal achievement of mental potential. All acts of speech, learning, vision & coordination are learned through a complex repertoire of movement. Brain Gym, through its specific movement exercises program, promotes the efficient communication amongst these many nerve cells & functional centres located throughout the brain's sensory motor system. Learning problems arise when communication between these centres are disrupted, for example, when the eyes & ears are blocked. Brian Gym exercises stimulate the flow  of information within the brain & sensory system mobilising the innate ability to learn & function at top efficiency.


Who can benefit from Brain Gym?

Brain Gym can be used to enhance learning abilities for both excellent learners as well as those who find learning a challenge. Brain Gym incorporates 26 easy & enjoyable targeted activities. These activities are designed to integrate body & mind and can bring about rapid and often dramatic improvements in concentration, memory, reading,writing, organising, listening, physical coordination & more. Brain Gym has  been shown to:

  1. calm and assist children and adults with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) & Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) improving their focus and behaviour

  2. enhance the general learning patterns of children with special needs, retained primitive reflexes  , brain damage and severe learning challenges.

Brain Gym is fun & easy to do especially if done to music. Brain Gym requires no special talents & can be enjoyed by everyone.


Non traditional applications of Brain Gym:

Brain Gym can be applied in many situations from preschoolers to adults & seniors. Brain Gym in its inception was designed for primary school students through to university level students, however it is now being used successfully across all age groups. I currently use Brain Gym in clinic to assist with the remediation of many of my bodywork and naturopathic clients.


What is Rhythmic Movement Training(RMT).

Rhythmic Movement Training (RMT) explores the role of babies’ natural developmental movements during various stages of development:

  1. Before birth

  2. The first six months after birth

  3. As they get up on their hands and knees

  4. As they learn to walk

    These movements are crucial for laying down the foundations of neural network pathway growth and myelination in the brain. They are also important for establishing head control, muscle tone and posture, the basis of our ability to move through life with ease and choice.

    RMT works with integrating the retained, or underdeveloped, infant reflexes (also called primitive reflexes or neo-natal reflexes) that are involved in learning challenges such as ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, writing problems, focussing and comprehension challenges, co-ordination difficulties and Asperger’s Syndrome. It has also been successful in working with people with anxiety, panic, emotional imbalances, behavioural problems, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s, psychosis, PTSD and general overwhelm.

    RMT is based on the work of Kerstin Linde, a Swedish movement training specialist, who developed movements based on her observations of how infants are meant to move. Dr Harald Blomberg, a Swedish psychiatrist, met Kerstin in the mid-1980s and started to use the movements with his patients and found that they had profound effects. He also studies with other movement specialists. Moira Dempsey, an Australian Educational and Developmental kinesiologist became interested in the role of retained reflexes in learning and behavioural challenges in the mid 1990’s. Moira Dempsey met Dr. Blomberg in 2003 and started using the movements herself and with clients. She noticed remarkable results. In 2011 Harald and Moira released the RMT book Movements that Heal.” (Reference: www.rhythmicmovement.com).


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