Therapeutic Play

Our Bobath trained children’s physiotherapists provide therapy to improve gross motor skills, and to keep your child’s body healthy whilst they are growing and developing.

Our approach is treatment through fun – especially with the younger children, the physiotherapist will “play” with your child in a therapeutic way, ensuring that whilst the child thinks they are playing they are also achieving therapeutic aims.  The physiotherapist will explain what they are doing and enable you to feel confident in therapeutic play outside of formal sessions.

For normally developing babies and children, play is a fundamental part of their life.  From a very young age babies are placed on a mat, surrounded by toys, and helped to play.  Their innate desire to learn leads them to move and to explore their environment.  They reach for things, then move for things, causing them to develop gross motor skills.  They manipulate toys, touching them, putting things on/in/over/under, shaking them, and interacting with them.  Through this play they begin to make sense of the world around them and learn about shape, size, depth, area, perception etc.

For children with disabilities these opportunities to learn do not naturally occur.  They may spend much more time being carried, or in a buggy and later a wheelchair.  Toys are brought to them, rather than them making their way to toys.  Opportunities for exploration, and learning by trial and error, are much less.  Spontaneous learning opportunities “getting into mischief” are lost.

As the child with disabilities grows older, and manual handling may become an issue, they are less likely to “play” or even lounge around on the floor.  They are “positioned” in appropriate seating, standing frames, sleep systems – all a necessary part of prevention of unwanted side effects of the disability.

Family, and more so, support staff / school staff may not see the children out of their equipment and thus they are unsure how or whether it is safe to do so.  Children then spend more time in the equipment and less time playing and learning.

But all children need to play.  All children, no matter how severe their disabilities, can enjoy interaction and express happiness.  With the correct advice families and support staff can gain confidence to play with the children in their care – in ways that the children want to play, which does not include sitting in their wheelchairs watching other children play.

We are passionate about play! We know that children do not want to “do exercises”.  We work through play so that therapy sessions are fun rather than a chore.

At SP Therapy Services our Physiotherapists are able to treat your child in the home, at school, or at suitable venues such as play gyms.  The treatment may include land or pool based activities, home exerciseprogrammes, postural management and stretches, advice on equipment and advice on leisure activities.

We can provide home visits & clinic appointments.

SP Therapy Services take great care in providing an exceptional standard of therapy to all our patients, whatever their individual age, diagnosis or location.

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