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Physiotherapy

CHILDREN’S PHYSIOTHERAPY

The school Physiotherapists are members of the Community Physiotherapy Team for South Warwickshire Foundation Trust.  We consist of Chartered Physiotherapists and Technical Instructors.  We also have student Physiotherapists on placement with us from University from time to time.

 

The school is committed to working in partnership with pupils, parents and other professionals to develop every individuals physical and functional potential.  We all want to promote an environment of physical well-being.

 

Physiotherapy includes providing: exercises; daily functional activities; hydrotherapy programmes; stretching programmes and postural management advice using specialist equipment.  Postural care is the constant promotion of good posture to enable children to participate in all activities thus enabling them to fulfil their potential and help learning.  Regular changes of position will improve concentration and readiness to learn.  There is a wide variety of equipment available to help with postural care.  Equipment that children need to use to assist their posture and activity requirements, range from: standing frames; walkers; tripods/sticks; splints/gaiters; benches and wedges.  Each child will require their own individual level of support. 

 

“A comfortable child will achieve so much more.”

 

Regular, daily activities can help improve concentration, learning skills and self-esteem.  Physiotherapy and education go hand-in-hand at special schools and it is at the heart of the educational approach to help maximise the potential of children.  Therapy has to be integrated into their day to day learning and relies on a multidisciplinary approach between class teachers, assistants and parents.  There is an emphasis on providing teaching staff with basic therapy skills, giving pupils the opportunity to learn through ongoing routines and encouraging them to develop physically within a class setting.

 

REFERRAL CRITERIA FOR A PHYSIOTHERAPY ASSESSMENT

The child should present with physical difficulties which are evident in their gross motor development, balance and stability or strength.  Difficulties in these areas may impact on their ability to meet milestones or develop gross motor skills at home, in leisure activities or at school.  The child should present with physical and /or mobility difficulties that impact on their gross motor skills within their environment.

They should be:

  • Children and young people aged 0-19
  • Children in permanent residence within Warwickshire and/or a Warwickshire GP.
  • Children whose parents/carers pay council tax to Warwickshire where the main reason for referral relates to adaptations and equipment for the home environment
  • Children not resident within Warwickshire, but attending a Warwickshire school and the main reason for referral relates to problems in physical education or with mobility problems accessing the school environment.

 

TEACHERS CAN DOWNLOAD A REFERRAL FORM FROM:

https://www.swft.nhs.uk/our-services/children-and-young-peoples-services/community-paediatrics/our-services-and-how-access-them

Email the referral form to southpaediatricphysiotherapy@swft.nhs.uk

 

When a child is referred, information is gathered about the child’s abilities.  An assessment of the child takes place in school with consent from parents.   A physiotherapy programme tailored to the child’s individual needs and aimed at specific goals, such as, enhancing skills development, function and ability to participate in everyday activities is incorporated into their daily activities and is integrated into all area of the curriculum.  We involve the child, parents/carers and school to identify and agree goals that;

  • Are age and developmentally appropriate
  • Focus on body functions/structures, activities and participation and environmental factors

 

Teachers, class staff and parents/carers are supported and trained so that they can carry out the daily therapy.  This training is vital because physiotherapy should not be something that just happens once a week, it should be every move and every opportunity and all the time.  The teaching staff can provide pupils with daily opportunities to practise functional movements.  Children need opportunities to experience the repetition of movement, in order for it to become a learned behaviour.

 

We also offer task-focused therapy in blocks over a short period of time to work on specific goals.  The programme is reassessed at regular intervals to ensure that the goals are being achieved and that it remains appropriate to their needs.

 

In addition, we provide advice and 24 hour postural management programmes to school and home to help protect the children against contractures and deformities and allow them access to changes of positions throughout the day.  It is a management programme that is developed and implemented in partnership with the child, their parents/carers, school and it is individualised and goal focused.

 

BENEFITS OF REGULAR EXERCISE

Getting children active doesn’t always have to involve structured activities, there are lots of other ways they can incorporate this into their days.  Wearing the right clothing and footwear is very important.  Getting children active can involve:

  • Walks  
  • Riding a bike
  • Swimming 
  • Going to the park
  • Play equipment 
  • Ball skills
  • Take the stairs                     
  • Dancing
  • Specialist sports classes

 

Motivate your child through sport, it improves fitness, mental health, physical health and allows for a better quality of life overall.

 

Related links: https://www.kids.org.uk/warwickshire-sendias-warwickshire-organisations-offering-support, http://www.leamingtondolphins.co.uk, https://www.rda.org.uk/, https://www.kidsrunfree.co.uk/parkkids/leamington-park-kids/,  https://www.kidsrunfree.co.uk/krf-location/st-nicholas-park-warwick/


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