The new NHTSA regulations regarding tethers and LATCH systems for infant/toddler car seats go into effect this year.
Here is a recent article on the benefits of meditation.
I particularly made note of when they stated that it may not have any more of a benefit than regular exercise. Athletes and those that exercise regularly can argue that is their meditation. That when they are “in the zone” their focus is in the now. A yoga instructor I used to take regularly called the practice a moving meditation and for me that was a perfect description.
In general the article states that meditation can be beneficial and even when it isn’t, it can’t hurt. Try including those moments into your life where you can tune out the distractions, even if it is only for a few minutes, and find out for yourself. True relaxation of the mind is actually difficult to achieve so give it a chance.
Much like diet and exercise, mindfulness can be a great thing to model to children and adolescents.
Those specializing in the science of exercise and nutrition have offered data regarding the frequency, duration, and intensity of exercise that we need to meet in order to combat the extra calories introduced into our diets this holiday season. There are of course statistics regarding the everyday nature of exercise that we should be participating in as well.
I do not have that information to share.
The information is useful but unfortunately it can also dampen the enthusiasm individuals may have when looking to improve their level of fitness.
So instead, just move. Whether its 45 minutes, 30 minutes, or even just 10 minutes. Move. We were born to move so let’s not fight our kinesthetic design. Exercise and if you can’t stand the thought of the treadmill or gym then find a physical activity and just do it. Don’t think about the calories you’ll burn in yoga, or the muscles you’ll fatigue rock climbing, or the distance you’ll cover biking.
Take the stairs, park further, walk the dog, play with kids, walk.
It’s important to baby proof your home because it’s the only way to keep them out. :)
Seriously though it really is important to create a safe environment for your child. Latches for keeping drawers and cabinets closed, straps to keep furniture from tipping, and gates to block off rooms are tools we can use to meet that goal. But we must remember that these tools are not a replacement for supervision. At most these things will only slow them down and we can’t assume that just because they couldn’t open the latch today that they can’t open it tomorrow. The same goes for their reach: hot liquids, knifes, heavy bowls etc have to be kept in the center of the table or towards the back of the counter. Tablecloths are also not a good idea.
With the fall weather upon us and winter looming, it’s a good idea to get outside and play. Playgrounds are a great place for kids to climb, jump, swing, and slide their way into healthy lifestyles.
And because the summer heat is well behind most of us, it’s a great time of year for hiking, biking, blading, boarding, and scooting our way into the big bad winter. Always remember to play it safe though. Always wear a helmet regardless of how skilled you are because accidents can happen for any number of reasons. The wrist/knee/etc… will heal and if not, well, you’ll adjust, but if you’re brain is injured chances are you will have lasting cognitive effects as a result of your injury. And of course there’s always death which rarely results from a wrist fracture.
I was recently talking to someone who was wondering about milestones and the assessments used to determine if a baby was developing “normally”. It is easy to get caught up in numbers and monthly checklists, but the most important thing is that the child continues to progress over time. Monthly checklists are good in that they will give a general sense of the timing of various milestones, but always remember that there is a range of time over which this can occur.
If you are concerned speak to your physician or consult with an Occupational Therapist that is experienced in pediatrics. Check the provided link for further information:
The first day of classes for NYC Dept of Education students is tomorrow, September 9th. In addition to making sure they have the tools necessary to succeed it is also important to make sure that they have the necessary habits. One of those habits is to be on time for school. In addition to improving or supporting their grades for the school year they will be learning a skill that can only benefit them in future endeavors. Places of employment as well as friends, acquaintances, and significant others will likely not want to associate with those that are not reliable. Can you imagine meeting a friend and having that person arrive 30 minutes late? That is not likely to be someone you would care to meet up with very often.
For students to begin embracing this behavior though it has to be modeled for them. I’ve heard parents saying to one another that often their kids are late because of them. It isn’t bad to be late once in a while, in fact it might even be a good time to teach coping strategies, but being late several times a week is the best way to teach children how to master excuses.
One ingredient for success in school is organization. Make sure that all the necessary tools are available such as folders, binders, page dividers, pencil case, and book bag. Keep an assigned work space at home where homework and school projects will be addressed. Spot check book bags and binders and if they are disorganized open a line of communication by discussing additional steps that can help with the goal of organization.
And when possible try and establish a schedule at home for work, play, dinner, and bed time.
As school is about to start it’s important to remember that kids are not pack mules. And yet as I state this I’m realizing that pack mules carry weight that is evenly distributed unlike our school kids. Carrying a heavy load on your back can cause back pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, cause numbness and tingling from nerve compression, and overall muscle strain. A rolling bag is optimal but often inconvenient, not to mention highly despised by most kids as It’s not exactly “cool.” Well neither am I, but even so, I rarely recommend the rolling bag because I too despise it as it is bound to trip someone in a crowded hallway. Following some simple tips can help ease fatigue, discomfort, and possible injury.
1. Wear the back pack on the back. It’s not a butt pack or a back-of-the-knee pack.
2. Wear both straps on the shoulders. Padded shoulder straps are best.
3. Look for a pack that has padding in general and that may even have the cool chest and hip supports.
4. Place the heaviest objects in the back pack so they will lie closest to the back. Why? Objects that are closer to the body are better supported and put less of a strain on trunk muscles (shorter lever arms) and the same rule applies to weight in back of the body as well.
5. Ask the teacher what books can be left in school.
Disclaimer of sorts: Every situation is unique, so use common sense and practice safety first.
The American Occupational Therapy Association states: “occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants help people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations).”
"Skills for the Job of Living"