Core Stability and Language Disorders

What is it?

 

The ability to engage the muscles of the trunk in order to provide a stable base for standing, sitting and movement.

How can it impact on communication?

Children with poor core stability need to work extra hard to maintain good posture and balance when sitting or standing. In class, this extra effort required to maintain core stability can result in a reduced capacity to attend to the task at hand. Children with poor core stability may present as being fidgety, slouching or having poor attention. As a result, they may miss out on information presented in class and have difficulty following instructions.

What can you do to help?

Allow children to engage in ‘warm up’ activities such as:

  • star jumps
  • trampoline work
  • obstacle courses

When engaged in table-top work, provide frequent opportunities for children to move around, e.g.

  • taking rubbish to the bin
  • wiping down the board
  • taking notes to teachers
  • getting up to sharpen pencils

Transitions from desk to carpet work provide opportunities for stimulating activities such as animal or wheel-barrow walks which can help the child to re-focus for the next session.

During carpet time, increase the child’s ability to attend by providing postural support, e.g. leaning against a wall or table leg. It can also help to provide them with a carpet square to sit on. This provides a visual reminder of where to sit, and can help adults redirect children by reminding them to ‘sit on your square’.

If concerned, seek input from a paediatric physiotherapist.

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