feeding the learning

by thankfeldenkrais

The crawl is vital.

Now spending very little time on his tummy to move through space,
Isaac is mastering his four point crawl,
Except at this stage his crawl is a homolateral movement –
Same side arm and leg moving simultaneously in the crawl.

Our goal now is teaching Isaac the next progression in movement,
Which is a contralateral pattern –
Where the limb on each side are opposing each other,
Right arm left leg moving forward together.

This is particularly tricky for Isaac currently,
Because his knees are quite splayed out in his crawl,
And we really want them underneath him,
At hip width apart.

This will allow more height, both in crawling,
And in kneeling,
And getting that height in itself is essential,
As part of the progression in getting up right in the world,
To standing.

And so we work on knees narrowing,
Raising taller for the height,
Focusing on the idea of separating the legs,
Which now more important than ever –
Half kneeling the perfect way to teach,
That one leg can be weight baring through the knee,
While the other bent forward with a flat foot to the ground.

And we begin to see an asymmetry we so desire for him,
Which will translate throughout all the movements to come.
The way eventually one would learn to walk.

And so we play,
Game after activity,
To help him,
Over bolster,
Over our knee,
High kneeling by the window watching the birds swim and sing in a birdbath.
Instilling the idea of how to separate at the hip joint,
Creating a diagonal within the body,
An asymmetry,
A contralateral movement.

And as before,
He responds,
He takes on our encouragement,
And by May,
Twenty-six months and 18 days old,
He reciprocal crawls.

His mind is reaching,
His body doing everything in its power to catch up.
Knowing it will require continual reinforcement,
So not to be lost again within a compromised brain,
As skill acquisition across the board broaden,
Our challenges keep intensifying,
But so does our hope.

And all the while having mountains of fun along the way.


And this is what keeps the engine ticking,
In both of us,
The excitement,
The novelty,
The mastery of new skills,
Feeding the learning,
And feeding the desire to learn even more.