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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:13 AM   #161
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

Master Paul Del Sordo of Pediatric Martial Arts in Springfield, New Jersey teaches kids the Soo Bahk Do system - a kind of Korean karate.

The way that rituals are an essential part of the various Asian Martial Arts should also be good for kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders. After all, kids with Autism, often thrive on routine...
Quote:
..."I liked the forms," [A mother whose two daughters train in the Hwang Karate Studio] said, describing the ritualized movements students must learn. She said Del Sordo's instruction is "a good mix of discipline and humor and wisdom" and is a constant reminder of certain values, "such as 'Always finish what you start.'"...
(source: Students study Soo Bahk Do at Hwang Karate : page 1 - NorthJersey.com)

Last edited by Visionary7903; March 25th, 2012 at 07:40 AM.
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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:26 AM   #162
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

One Martial Arts technique which lacks rituals is Krav Maga. This type of Martial Art, originating from Israel, focuses almost on self-defense only and what works in real life. This might be a really good technique to learn for kids and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders who are being bullied (or are at great risk of being bullied) and need to learn quickly and properly how to defend themselves...
Quote:
...A dozen disabled women are learning these self-defense techniques at the Levis Jewish Community Center west of Boca Raton, in a class designed to boost their confidence in the stressful situations they regularly encounter. The women, who have physical and neurological impairments, have been bullied, groped, stared at and stalked. Many lack friends and spend most of their time in the house, leaving them vulnerable during their contacts with the outside world.

..."If someone attacked me now, I'd be ready," [Tori] said.

"They are learning safety skills for real life," [Marianne] said. "They are generally not equipped to handle abuse and dangerous situations."...
(source: Boca Raton: Disabled women learn self defense - Sun Sentinel)
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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:32 AM   #163
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

Here is an example of a success story, via a testimonial, of using Krav Maga successfully to minimise problems related to bullying. It is taken from the site for Next Generation Krav Maga in Dallas, Texas...
Quote:
Perfect Bully Target
Our son was born with a mild physical disability that effects the mobility in one arm and shoulder. This, coupled with less than compassionate teachers at school, made him the perfect bully target. School days were a nightmare dominated by bruises, anxiety and fear. A friend of ours recommended the Next Generation program to us, but we were apprehensive about enrolling because of the disability. Flash forward only nine months, and he?s more confident, much less reactive to inappropriate or aggressive behavior in others, and excited about school again. As an unexpected blessing, the program has actually mitigated a lot of the disability that almost kept us from enrolling him! Using his Krav Maga warm-ups, he now actively enjoys our daily stretching, and he has gained strength, boosted his reflexes, and his mobility has improved beyond what we were told it ever could.
(source: Next Generation Krav Maga Perfect Bully Target)
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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:39 AM   #164
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

Master Paul Del Sordo of Pediatric Martial Arts in Springfield, New Jersey teaches kids the Soo Bahk Do system - a kind of Korean karate.

One of the added features of learning a Martial Art with lots of rituals, like Soo Bahk Do, is it gives you an introduction to a foreign culture. This should broaden the horizons of special needs kids (as it would with anyone else)...
Quote:
...This spring, four young students who are township residents received their black belts in a ceremony presided over by H.C. Hwang, son of the founder of the Soo Bahk Do system which is taught at the school.

Holly ... 9, said part of her enjoyment of karate is learning about the Korean culture.

"The hardest part for me is the terminology," she said. "We have to learn the names of some of the kicks and punches."
Holly said the students also spar, but at her level, she said, "It's called free sparring. We don't actually hit each other."

...While Holly and Michael earned their Cho Dan rank, or first degree black belt, Sean ... 13, earned his E Dan, or second degree...
(source: Students study Soo Bahk Do at Hwang Karate : page 1 - NorthJersey.com)
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Old March 25th, 2012, 07:49 AM   #165
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

As far as culture goes, South America is among the most colourful places on Earth in terms of what it offers in that regard. Capoeira is a Brazilian Martial Art that combines elements of dance and music. It is gaining popularity in western countries and is known for its quick and complex moves, using mainly power, speed, and leverage for leg sweeps.

A Capoeira program for special needs kids is currently running in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Note the way that additional things are incorporated that most of the Martial Arts do not have - relating to music for example...
Quote:
...Capoeira Kids aims to provide physical fitness, music and fun to children with special needs. In the program, your child will learn to move and control their body within their abilities. They will improve strength, balance and coordination through the dance like movements of Capoeira. They will also participate in the music of capoeira, singing songs, and playing drums and other instruments.

The instructor, Trent ... is a pediatric physical therapist and capoeirista (capoeira player) with 9 years experience playing the game of capoeira. While travelling in Brazil, he saw several instances of children and adults with special needs playing capoeira and was amazed by how they adapted the game to their own unique abilities.

Capoeira Kids is for children ages 5 and over with special needs, such as cerebral palsy, spina bifida, autism, Asperger's, Developmental Coordination Disorder, Down Syndrome, etc. The goal of Capoeira Kids is to provide
a supportive environment where kids can strengthen their body and spirit, enjoy fitness and a healthy lifestyle, learn music, make friends, and most importantly have fun
...
(source: http://www.facebook.com/note.php?not...59461497408355)

Last edited by Visionary7903; June 23rd, 2012 at 12:16 AM.
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Old March 25th, 2012, 08:16 AM   #166
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

In an above post it was mentioned that Martial Arts can truly be seen as an all-in-one treatment for Autism Spectrum Disorders:
Quote:
..."One parent (of an autistic child) told me that [American Taekwondo Association] training gave her family 'the best bang for the buck' out of all the therapies they tried," says [Barbie, founder of the Achievement Academy]. "Another told me it (enrolling their autistic child in ATA) was the best thing they ever did, seeing the fastest advancement in the least amount of time. I know why: the occupational therapy, the sensory, the social - it truly is a 'one stop' place for all the needs of our kids."...
Capoeira may be an even stronger 'one stop shop' for the needs of special needs children. Aside from the Martial Arts aspect, children learn the dance moves and music that come with the Brazilian technique...
Quote:
Capoeira is a Brazilian art form that is a mix of dance, music, martial art, and gymnastics...
(sources: Karate Man - Chattanooga Parent, llc; Capoeira Kids | A fusion of Martial Arts, Dance, Music, and Fun for kids with special needs)
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Old March 25th, 2012, 08:31 AM   #167
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Capoeira is, not suprisingly, used as a therapy in Brazil. There seems to be quite a lot of stimulation involved in relation to the art form, as well as various roles for the participants to play, which might be especially good for those people with special needs who are prone to boredom. They might find a traditional Asian Martial Art a little too two-dimensional...
Quote:
...Capoeira was created in Brazil over four hundreds years ago by African slaves who had to disguise their fight training into some sort of dance/celebration. Instruments and live music were introduced and became an important part of the Art.
Capoeira creates an extremely social environment, due to the need for live music. A minimum of three people is required, for two to 'play' and one to play the Berimbau (a one-stringed instrument). Usually, a large group will play together, and form a full Bateria, an orchestra of sorts, of percussion instruments.
Capoeira is practiced across the globe, is present on all continents, and has been adopted as an extra curricular discipline in many universities around the world. Capoeira academies and clubs are now common in communities everywhere.
In Brazil, Capoeira is being used as a form of therapy for people with special needs. Some very successful programs have over 20 years of outreach.
Due to Brazil's history of social problems, Capoeira-based therapy programs are quite common for assisting those who have suffered from discrimination, aggression, abuse and social violence. They have had tremendous success in helping participants to recover their confidence, self-esteem and social skills as well as building group participation and team-work.
Similar programs in Brazil are helping those with violent behavior to gain more control over their temper and reactions improving this way their social interaction by making them more calm and peaceful...
(source: About : Bantu Beira Mar Capoeira)

Last edited by Visionary7903; June 23rd, 2012 at 12:16 AM.
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Old March 25th, 2012, 08:42 AM   #168
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Again, here is more on the capacity of special needs kids practicing a Martial Art form (in this case Capoeira) to be a source of inspiration to others. When you see someone else with seemingly insurmountable challenges go on and try their best, it touches your heart and makes you realise that your problems are so trivial in comparison...
Quote:
...In between my students, almost one hundred, there were autistics; Down?s syndrome affected; blinds; mentally and physically handicapped kids or even people in a wheelchair...

I recall a moment that struck me, it was 15 years ago when I was still a beginner ... when I was touched by seeing the students ... They had the same needs of my students and they prepared a Capoeira ... show that deeply touched all the public and half the audience burst into tears.

I decided to ... develop my project with special students. In few months I achieved to ingrain a group with a strong feeling of reliance giving them some exercises that they introduced in their daily routine.

...It was unbelievable what those students achieved to do in a roda and the self-confidence and happiness that they won for their life. Even more incredible is that the 'so-called normal' learns by integration with special. ...I have seen many big and strong capoeiristas that were moved by the effort, the bravery and the passion with what they were facing their bounds.

In front of these people we, the 'normal' people, should revaluate our difficulties. Maybe what really make things difficult to us are our own attitudes and not a real physical obstacle.

...We can even go a little bit further. As per example when a hemiplegic student, with hard troubles in mobility was talking to me when suddenly pointed to another direction. I looked that way innocently and he tried to make a rasteira to me. I didn't realize at the beginning, but in Capoeira, the most relevant is the intention. So he had already defeated me. He was already a capoeirista and I haven?t even noticed it...
(source: http://4capoeirathoughts.com/2011/06...cdo-barcelona/)
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Old March 25th, 2012, 08:47 AM   #169
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Here is a great video showing how Capoeira is being used to foster inclusion (including those people with Autism Spectrum Disorders) in Brazil: Capoeira Social Inclusion - YouTube
I guess the history and the fact that Capoeira was developed by people who were excluded originally (Afro-Brazilian slaves), lends credibility for this use of the art form...
Quote:
...Capoeira ARUANDA Project is a non-profit org. working with impoverished and special needs people. Here in Santos-Sao Paulo, we are blessed to be by the ocean but the inner city residents with physical and financial disabilities don't have the same opportunity and access to an athletic facility.
(source: Capoeira Social Inclusion - YouTube )
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Old March 25th, 2012, 09:01 AM   #170
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Master Paul Del Sordo of Pediatric Martial Arts in Springfield, New Jersey has been instructing special needs since the 1980s. His successful approach focuses on individualising instruction to special needs kids, recognising that each one is so unique:
Quote:
..."He's extremely patient with them," Sue ... a physical therapist .. who has worked extensively with Del Sordo, said. "He treats them like regular kids."

...Teaching martial arts to children with special needs requires an instructor with a singular skill set. ...In teaching the class, Del Sordo has learned to read each student and tailor his instruction to them.

"Each child has a specific need," Del Sordo said. "It's not a cookie-cutter thing."

While he is able to mainstream some students into regular classes, special needs students begin their instruction in one-on-one classes in a program designed specially for them that includes a complete rating system and belt program for them alone.

..."Once you find out what makes a kid tick, you can go and make them do what you want to do," Del Sordo said.
(source: Karate Week: Hwang Studio Teaches Karate To Special Needs Students - Springfield, NJ Patch)
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