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Conductive education in more details

Conductive education is a system, a point of view, and a method used to support and guide neurologically-disabled people towards a better internal organisation and development of functions.Our conductors guide the functionally-disabled person to get to know and develop his/her body.We have knowledge and experience of many different diagnoses of neurological damage.
The basis is conductive education that works with each individual and his or her personal criteria with an intensive training.Movement, communication and cognitive development are in focus.With an improved movement pattern, the potential is opened for development and learning.
With today’s pedagogy and perhaps even with certain medical terms, peoples holistic development is not as controversial as it was in Europe in the 1940s when the method was founded and developed by András Petö in Hungary.
Understanding how a person acts in a given situation requires a complete insight on how different functions interact.It’s a matter of movement, cognition, communication and social capability.Everything hangs together.Training and teaching functionally-disabled people towards better functions must be seen as a holistic development both in theory and practice.
Conductive education and its positive attitude mean trying to find the functions and abilities that exist in the central nerve system.The existing functions are used as a base for learning new functions.By active participation in different activities and situations it is eventually possible to build an ability system that we can use actively, but unconsciously, to resolve different everyday situations/problems.
Brain damage is defined on the basis of medical perspective as plus and minus problems.A person may have too much of something (plus) or too little of something (minus).Thus the principle is to try and compensate by working off that which the individual has too much of.Examples are spasticity, involuntary movement, epilepsy.At the same time adding what is lacking such as nutrients and movements.
On the basis of our conductive perspective this is a complex set of problems.Damage in the central nerve system does not just mean a plus-minus system; neither does it mean a physical impediment. It is often combined with learning problems, delayed cognitive (mental) development, perception difficulties and damaged sight or hearing.
To remove or reduce spasticity (increase of tonus) through medical or neurological treatments (botox, baclofen or dorsal rhizotomy) is not solving the problem. In some cases, spasticity reduction can counteract deformations and reduce pain. But the learning problems remain and the functions do not improve automatically.
Conductive Education helps to balance muscle tention by controlling tonus impulses – involuntary movements. With an improved movement pattern, the potential is opened for development and learning. At Move & Walk each individual has the opportunity to develop at his or own pace in order to live a life that is as independent and active as possible.
The group
The group is an important part of the conductive education. But all training, even in groups, is based on the individual’s needs. Together with the conductor each person finds his/her own solution for different movements and activities. There is no right or wrong. There is not only one acceptable way of sitting, rolling, standing or walking. It’s all about finding the individual´s own solution – the one that is felt to be the easiest and smoothest to achieve on the basis of individual capability.
A person is a social individual who looks for conformation and contact all the time. Group situation provides support and encouragement for social and communicative development. Our groups are as homogenous as possible so that those who are being trained shall be on an equal functional level both mentally and in terms of movements. The participants train together with one or two accompanying persons. It is important that the family, assistants, schools and others who take part in the trainee`s life are given new tools to support the functionally-disabled person in his/her everyday life better.
The programmes
A human’s development is holistic. That is why we train in a holistic way in practice. A conductive training programme follow a “normal” child’s’ complex development. We go from a lying, through sitting to standing and walking and give the participants experience of all possible different positions, situations and activities. All exercises affect movement, cognitive, communicative and social ability at the same time.
Helping less is helping more. We show and learn accompanying family members and assistants how they can support the trainee in an active and developing way, in other words, without their resolving the problems for him/her.
An example: Somebody is thirsty and would like a drink. In this case we help the trainee by going and getting a glass of water for him. But if we show the person where he/she can get some water he/she can solve the problem on his/her own. Correspondingly we can see that certain aids are the problem solver for the functionally-disabled person – anything more is an obstacle to development.
Rhythmic intention
Different symptoms need different times and pace to achieve relaxation and thereby a coordinated movement. By providing tangible time, pace and verbal support, we provide real support for the individual’s internal organisation. The conductors show the right pace for each individual, at the same time, provides sufficient time to achieve the objective (the movement).
Time: When giving a concrete “limited” time to achieve a movement, there is better motivation and encouragement for the activity than where there is all the time in the world.
Pace: Implementing a normal "step-up" programme without music is almost impossible. The pace of the music provides us with support to coordinate our movements in time and space. The same applies to those with neurological function disability. With the help of singing or counting we can provide the corresponding support.
Verbal support: Small children often talk to themselves when playing. What are they really doing? It has been known for a long time that it is easier to coordinate our movements when we articulate our objectives at the same time as we make the movements. By talking, we create consciousness and participation in the activity.  
A practical example
A neurological function disability does not have just physical consequences. It has a lot more.
Imagine the following situation: You break your right arm and are in plaster for 6 weeks. Unfortunately, you are right-handed and work on drawings with a firm of architects. Naturally enough, you cannot do your work satisfactorily and also find it impossible to do the day-to-day chores at home.
If, in addition, you also have children and your wife or husband is not always at home to help you. You will come across many problems during the weeks when you are in plaster. Not only in concrete terms but also the stress and frustration of not being able to cope with normal activities.
When the 6 weeks in plaster are over you can resume your “normal activities” again.
The situation for a person with a neurological functional disability is just like in the example above but there is a significant difference. The problems that disappeared when the plaster was taken off remain for the person with a neurological injury if she or he does not have the possibility to exercise. Initially there is a physical functional disability and, with time, the person with a neurological functional disability often has difficulties with communication and the development of personality.
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