My girls kick butt. Well, I think they kick butt. Our girls have been taking martial arts for many years now. The daughter on the right hand side started when she was four years old. If you visit this blog often then you know that she has special needs. As a little person, she also had a hip that did not function well. An orthopaedic surgeon at one point indicated to me that she needed extra help with gross motor movements. After she was diagnosed with sensory processing disorder and fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, a brain injury sustained from prenatal alcohol exposure, I researched a lot. I took several courses and attended conferences to learn about FASD cutting edge protocols and therapies that were working in several different provinces. Ontario at that time had no knowledge or programs that supported children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. My youngest was adopted at five months old and she was prenatally exposed to alcohol.
When she was four, we signed Ainsley up for martial arts because many experts were indicating that FASD responded well to repetition. In my research, I also learned that activities like martial arts and dance were good ways to build physical strength and also potentially helped build new pathways in the brain. My daughter is now 11. She’s been doing this almost a full seven years (actually seven next month) and it is one of her happy places. This type of activity has helped her to find one of her greatest strengths – her athleticism. Her hip has completely corrected itself and she walks and runs well now. In fact she does track and field too.
Martial arts has also helped my older daughter find confidence and self esteem. She has also been able to battle some anxiety symptoms sometimes with a bit of help through breathing and working with the teachers at martial arts.
Last weekend we watched them both grade together. It’s been quite some time since they graded together. It’s a bit shocking to see how they have grown. I am used to Ainsley being the smallest one at every grading. But there was a moment when I looked at her from the back and didn’t recognize her for a second. Then I realized she’s now almost the same height as her older sister.
So now of my daughters has four stars and and the other has six stars and they are both junior black belts. Payton has continued to keep doing her best despite this difficulty with her ankle.
Anyways this was supposed to be a Wordless Wednesday but it clearly is not so wordless this week.