Anna Kennedy Online – Autism Awareness Charity
Yoga for SEN, Autism, ADHD, PDA, Rhett’s Syndrome & other neurodiversity’s – an article by Giuliana Wheater

Yoga for SEN, Autism, ADHD, PDA, Rhett’s Syndrome & other neurodiversity’s – an article by Giuliana Wheater

Yoga for SEN, Autism, ADHD, PDA, Rhett’s Syndrome & other neurodiversity’s ​

An article by our Well-being Ambassador Giuliana Wheater and her video!

Yoga is now well recognised as a therapy to encourage wellness, focus & peace.

This week I have included six very simple yoga poses for EVERYONE, including if you need to be assisted.
Everything I share, I love to think that it is all TOTALLY INCLUSIVE. Here is the link to this week’s YouTube video demonstrating them.

Did you know that yoga improves mental flexibility so is amazing for autistic people for instance ?! When we exercise our bodies, we are exercising our brains. Just simple yoga exercises with our hands and fingers stimulate the brain as the muscles found here relate to the muscles of the brain.

Yoga also promotes self-awareness, interpersonal awareness, compassion, body awareness along with self-esteem as the neurotransmitters of happiness, confidence, productivity & motivation are pushed up from the gut & stimulated in the brain ! Ninety percent of our happy hormone, serotonin, is made in the gut!!

Yoga balances the nervous system because of the release of these vital neurotransmitters & eases stress as well building our resilience to stress & boosting immunity. Much needed in these challenging times of the “new normal “.

Through the regular practice of yoga self-management, self-regulation & emotional/social intelligence are given a turbo charge! Depression is reduced as well as anxiety. Sensory integration is boosted too …. fabulous for our children with autism & other different abilities.

Yoga incorporates mindfulness, sound, breath work & meditation too so it flows beautifully alongside & interwoven with my other therapies.

Yoga should never hurt contrary to a common myth & can be done seated if there are mobility issues along with assisted yoga.

Yoga is also HUGE fun & can be turned into stories, charades, games & even songs, or music as I frequently do with the children & families I work with. Everything is an invitation & everything is fun & inclusive. I have lots of videos on my YouTube channel where I “play” with yoga in this way so that even tiny children want to explore it … all whilst getting these amazing benefits!!

The butterfly

Reclining side twists

The butterfly

The boat

Easy pose

See you next week, Stay safe, warm, and happy!
Lots of love, Giuliana

https://www.therapiesforspecialneeds.co.uk/

https://www.therapiesforspecialneeds.co.uk/rainbow-kids-club/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/rainbowtherapieskidsandfamilies/

Yoga for SEN
Yoga for SEN
Yoga for SEN
Yoga for SEN
Yoga for SEN
Yoga for SEN
Anna Kennedy Online have been shortlisted for the British Diversity Awards as Charity of the Year!

Anna Kennedy Online have been shortlisted for the British Diversity Awards as Charity of the Year!

Anna Kennedy Online have been shortlisted for the British Diversity Awards as Charity of the Year!

The British Diversity Awards promote the values of equality, diversity and inclusion by rewarding those individuals, organisations and unsung heroes who help to make the world and the workplace a better place for others. Progress and acceptance cannot be taken for granted, and although it has been shown beyond doubt that diversity is good for business and society as a whole, we’re witnessing a worrying increase in intolerance and hate crimes against minorities.

Everyone has a right to equality of opportunity and esteem without fearing harassment or prejudice. We believe that by continuing to bang the drum for equality, diversity and inclusion across these islands that we can help make the UK a better place to live and work for everyone.

Anna Kennedy Shared: “My AnnaKennedyonline Team and I are so excited and honoured to be shortlisted for this prestigious award. I couldn’t do what I do without my team of devoted volunteers. We continue to forge ahead and bang the drum to raise awareness , acceptance for families within the autism community who are struggling to make their voices to be heard.”

The Awards Ceremony will be taking place on Thursday 10 March 2022 at the Grand Connaught Rooms, London. Click here for details.

Miracle League Basketball – an article by Easton Turnage

Miracle League Basketball – an article by Easton Turnage

Miracle League Basketball – an article by Easton Turnage 

Growing up in the first few years of my life, my family and I were always a “party of four”. It was just my mom, my dad, my older brother, and me. From a young age, I always desired to have a younger brother.

When the time came that my parents told me that I would be getting one I was thrilled! Finally, I would have someone new to look after, play with, and even care for. A “family of five” would become our new reality.

On April 10, 2004, Cooper Turnage was born. During the first few years of his life Cooper was a very curious baby. He would crawl around the house doing whatever his little heart desired. It was like he was in his own world. We started to realize that Cooper wasn’t like most kids his age, but often liked to think that he would just “grow out of it”. He had a difficult time keeping eye contact and would get very easily distracted no matter what we tried. Family pictures were always a hoot.

We never would have imagined that these small things would carry on once he started going to school, but we soon realized that those small things started to increase in numbers.

In subjects such as math and reading he quickly fell behind, but in science and history he often outperformed his fellow classmates. This is when we realized that Cooper had some learning disabilities. ADHD and Dyslexia were both terms we were introduced to early on.

We knew that him learning would look a lot different than how other kids learned, but we were willing to do whatever it took to ensure that Cooper felt welcome wherever he was at.

At first, I remember thinking he was making such great progress. But after a few years in the public school system, we realized that this wasn’t the right path for Cooper to take.

Around this time, he was diagnosed with high-functioning Autism and my parents had a choice to make. They decided it would be best to find a school that fit kids like Cooper better, so we packed up our stuff and moved out to small town Granbury Texas.

The move was by no means easy. It meant leaving everything behind that once felt like home. But it was worth it to me to know that Cooper would feel welcome.

My older brother and I had grown up playing baseball and knew we wanted to continue playing for as long as the game allowed us to play. Well, Cooper had always grown up watching us play and we had always prayed that there would be some way to get him out on a field and let him play some baseball.

We wanted to find a way for him to feel normal and that he was just like any other kid his age. Then came the Miracle League Baseball. A local owner of a baseball organization in town decided to build and open Granbury’s first Miracle League Baseball field right in the middle of his complex. Built out of wheelchair accessible rubber/turf material, the field was specifically designed to accommodate the needs of every future player.

During the inaugural game, Cooper was quick to make his make. He had a natural ability to swing the bat. It wasn’t long before Cooper hit the league’s first homerun. But Cooper didn’t stop there. As he grew into his body Cooper started to crush multiple homeruns a game. And then his fielding and catching started to improve greatly to.

So much so that often I must put a glove on to play catch with him because he throws so hard! I have the great pleasure of volunteering at the Miracle League where I get to help kids like Cooper and help them feel like they are important too. There was finally a place that Cooper felt like he could excel at and put on a show for a crowd. The smile on his face is what makes it all worth it. He turns 18 in April and is just getting started.

We have even talked about in the future looking into the Special Olympics or even a more competitive form of Miracle League to challenge him and let his abilities shine. We can’t wait to see what God has in store for him!

Author: Mala Thapar