One of the things we really wanted to get Bilal into was swimming. He loves the water but he has no structure and of course cannot swim or float independently. I searched a lot online for somewhere that offered adaptive aquatics that’s swimming classes but with teachers knowledgeable of special needs requirements. My searches came out bust or places too far away to be practical. At the special needs camps expo I was on the lookout for swimming classes and thankfully found a center called Unique Therapy Services, they offer adaptive aquatics and aquatic therapy. They offer the classes at a local hotel’s swimming pool and one only 5 minutes away. We set an appointment and went. It turns out is run by a middle aged couple and a couple other therapists. Most clients were present for aquatic physical therapy with a lot of underwater stretching and exercises. Bilal had the option of doing either one but as he’s already taking PT, OT, horse back riding and soon also hippo-therapy (will elaborate in another post) I decided he didn’t need more therapy just normal swimming lessons will be enough. The teacher is in the water with him while he’s wearing a swimming vest around his chest and waist and they throw out rubber ducks or other floating toys and go swim and collect them, he’s learning to kick properly, to blow and spit if the water gets into his face, and just gaining confidence in the water and he loves it, a huge smile on his face the whole time and always saying “by myself” and wanting to get the farthest toy and swim around the whole pool, he even changed the vest to a thinner belt and learnt to bounce in the water till the water reached his nose. The teacher says he’ll be swimming in no time. They offer classes in sessions of 4 lessons each so we’ll take 2 sessions and see from there, by the time he finishes those it will be summer so perfect timing.
April 11, 2012