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How Can Exercise Physiologists Assist Children With Developmental Delays?

Children With Developmental Delays

Exercise physiologists can play a valuable role in helping children with developmental delays by designing and implementing specialised exercise programs that address their unique needs.

Exercise physiologists assess the child’s physical abilities, motor skills, and overall health. They consider the child’s specific developmental delays, such as motor skill deficiencies, balance issues, or muscle weakness. This assessment informs the creation of an individualised exercise plan.

At Alpha Abilities, our skilled exercise physiologist will work closely with you to create a tailored exercise plan to address your developmental delays. We aim to help you achieve your full potential and improve your well-being through safe and practical exercises.

What Is Developmental Delay?

Developmental delay is defined as a child not achieving developmental milestones compared to peers of the same age range. Milestones are measured in physical, social, emotional, language and cognitive growth. A significant delay in two or more of these domains affecting children under the age of 5 years is termed a Global Developmental Delay (GDD)

If your child has a developmental delay, they still need to gain the skills or reach the milestones experts expect children their age to have. Most developmental delays will resolve on their own over time. With our services, your child should be able to catch up to their peers and reach their full potential.

How Can It Be Detected?

Detecting children’s developmental delays involves observation, assessment, and communication between parents or caregivers and healthcare professionals. Here are the primary ways in which developmental delays can be detected.

Developmental Milestones

developmental observation for children

Healthcare professionals and parents should be aware of typical developmental milestones for a child’s age. These milestones include achievements in motor skills, language and communication, cognitive abilities, and social and emotional development. A child consistently failing to meet these milestones may be an early indicator of a developmental delay.

Regular Check-Ups

Pediatricians and healthcare providers typically conduct well-child check-ups at specific intervals during a child’s early years. During these visits, they assess the child’s growth and development, ask questions about their behaviours and abilities, and observe their interactions. Parents should communicate their concerns about their child’s development during these visits.

Developmental Assessment

Developmental Assessment by physiologist

A more comprehensive developmental assessment may be conducted if a healthcare provider suspects a developmental delay. This assessment may involve standardised tests and observations by healthcare professionals, including pediatricians, developmental specialists, or psychologists. It may also include medical tests to rule out any underlying medical conditions causing the delay.

Types Of Developmental Delays

Developmental delays align with the areas of child development. These include:

Cognitive (Thinking) Skills

Cognitive skills include thinking, learning and understanding information. A child with a cognitive delay may have trouble following directions or solving a problem.

Social And Emotional Skills

Social and emotional skills for children

These skills include getting along with others, expressing feelings and the ability to communicate needs. A child with social or emotional delays may struggle with understanding social cues, having a conversation or dealing with changes to a routine.

Speech And Language Skills

Speech and language skills include using and understanding language. A child with speech and language delays may have difficulty speaking words or understanding what others say.

Fine And Gross Motor Skills

These skills include coordinating small (fine) and large (gross) muscles. A child with an acceptable motor delay may have trouble holding an object in their hands or with colouring and writing. A child with a gross motor delay may have difficulty rolling over, sitting up or walking.

How Exercise Physiologists Help Children With Developmental Delays.

Exercise Physiologists for kids growth

At Alpha Abilities, Our Exercise physiologists start by assessing the child’s physical abilities, strengths, weaknesses, and overall health. They consider the specific developmental delays the child is experiencing and any medical or physical conditions that may be present.

Based on the assessment, exercise physiologists create customised exercise programs. These programs target specific developmental areas that need improvement, such as motor skills, muscle strength, balance, coordination, and flexibility.

If your child has been diagnosed with a developmental delay, contact us today to obtain a comprehensive solution for developmental delays. At Alpha Abilities, we provide guidance and tools to help you support your child’s development at every step. Visit us to learn more about how to empower yourself to help and encourage your child!

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