Tuesday 21 January 2014

"Know your limitations & then defy them"

Over the last few weeks, since Seth has been back at school there has been a lot more chats about what Seth 'can't do'.  Now that may seem blunt, but that's not me saying that, it is what Seth says when he is discussing what's been going on at school. 

It seems that many times throughout the week the other children at school are making comments that are knocking Seth's confidence and teachers are unknowingly doing the same treating Seth slightly different than the other children. Seth is different than everyone else but that's the broad 'everyone else' and not the collective. What two people are the same? But getting this across to Seth can be difficult at times. Because of Seth's muscle condition i think it has become second nature to the teachers to try and make things easier for Seth, and the other children? Well they are just kids and will always pick out differences in other children no matter what.

Although Seth has these moments of self doubt, he is mostly a very confident child and we are so proud of how he deals with everything that goes on in his life. When he has these 'i can't do that' moments we think it is important to remind Seth of what he can do. We do this every day by embracing his intellectual and creative side with Science, Craft, building and reading etc but sometimes we really need to help him get his confidence back about his physical ability.

This weekend as something a little different we organised a family gym session with Gareth at Purity health and fitness. We thought that aside from building his confidence we could help Seth to realise just how strong he actually is plus we knew that Opeie would really be in his element playing fitness games and having an excuse to put on a pair of boxing gloves. 

The studio was packed full of fun equipment and I could see the boys faces light up as soon as we walked in. The boys didn't waste any time, taking full advantage of the time that we had there.

Because of Seth's muscles he can be quite uneasy on his feet at times, but thanks to Gareth with some short balancing games Seth's confidence was soon slowly creeping back. He still needed help to sturdy himself but he could see that we were also having to concentrate to stay balanced.

 Seth was eager to show of his manly strength with a bit of weight lifting and was confident lifting some of the smaller weights. Gareth explained the importance of not pushing yourself to much and taking care of your body to avoid injury, Gareth then showed Seth some of the larger weights, one was the same weight as a canon ball, and Seth said when he's older he will do these, bless him!

Opeie was just happy playing with balls. You cant beat the good old fashioned exercise equipment.

There was some agility training and games to test the boys hand eye co-ordination which they both had a lot of fun taking part with. It was good to see them both having fun in that kind of environment, they were both very confident talking to Gareth and were taking in everything that he said.

What i loved was there was no 'i can't do that' during our session, each game/activity started with Gareth explaining a technique, positions and benefits from the exercise and Seth and Opeie showing us what they could do. It was a great confidence boost for Seth. Mrs M being the pro that she is has trained with Gareth many times,  so she showed us how to do many of the exercises and Seth couldn't wait to give each activity a try.

And then it was time for a game Gareth called 'lets see how strong Daddy is'. The boys excitedly filled the bars up with weights to test me, I think they were impressed by my butchness and Mrs M swooned in the corner as I did my bit (i wish) haha.

We explained to Gareth that there are no need for weights and we showed him how we do bench presses at home.

 As i said there was no shortage of equipment and definitely no shortage of motivation from Seth, he took on every activity like a pro and was genuinely excited about getting involved.

 And then it was time to do the thing the boys had been itching to do since entering the studio. It gave us the chance to take our own gloves, Opeie doesn't have any boxing gloves at the moment so he decided to take his incredible Hulk gloves which was really cute. It was boxing time and by this point in the session Seth's confidence about his physical abilities was through the roof and it was great to watch.

Seth was feeling pumped by this point and asked if he could try the treadmill, we had one at home till a few months back and Seth loved using it even if it was for only short times. Walking is very difficult for Seth but is something he desperately wants to feel more comfortable doing and something he does try to push. A few minutes on the treadmill and Seth was feeling really good about what he had achieved.

 Opeie? well he was still happy kicking and throwing various shaped balls around the studio.

The session turned out to be one of the best things we have done as a family and was something that Seth really needed. I don't expect that it is going to make things easier in Seth's life but I hope that these confidence boosts make him realise just how strong he really is.

Thank you Gareth the Session really helped Seth appreciate a little more what he is capable of physically.

To find out more about personal training or to talk to professionals about activities suitable for you or your families needs contact the trainers at www.purityhealthandfitness.co.uk

1 comment:

Rebecca Beesley said...

brilliant! I especially loved your own version of the bench presses. So glad you all had a fun time. Seth is an amazing lad, and he has a great family to keep reminding him of that. I remember hearing a lady with severe ASD giving a talk once and she said the word 'can't' just means something you 'can' do but maybe not just yet. But with a bit more practice, patience, perserverence etc those 'can't's become 'can' xxx