The Reflexes – back to the source
Archaic or primitive reflexes are already present in the womb and are necessary for the proper development of the baby as well as its survival. Reflexes support us in:
• Coming to this world (ATNR, all spinal reflexes)
• Survival (search and deglutination reflexes)
• Coordination (ATNR, STNR, Grasping)
• Balance and standing up against gravity (postural reflexes)
From the moment a baby uses their reflexes for a period varying from weeks to a few months they then need to assimilate them in their general motor pattern in order to create a stable basis for voluntary movements (riding a bicycle, writing, catching a ball, reading etc).
If those reflexes have not been assimilated, they become over-active (they persist) and they act as parasites to the child’s development as they do not allow the child to create the stable basis for the voluntary coordination or to effectively and effortlessly develop their fine motor skills and abilities. This is a reason why a child might present difficulties or compensations (too tight a grasping of a pen while writing, concentration problems, lack of coordination, tension in the eyes…).
If on the other hand these same reflexes do not mature on time they might turn hypo-active and thus the child might lack the stable basis they need for some activities (holding the pen, balance, memorization skills, space perception, mathematics).
As for adults, the proper functioning of these archaic reflexes is necessary for balance, self-confidence, coordination, learning and communication…
We can thus see how working with reflexes and their integration to the general motor system of the body is absolutely necessary for improved learning, dealing with “learning difficulties” as well as our general wellbeing.
In the Center of Kinesthetic Intelligence, after an initial evaluation of 21 reflexes we work on those not supporting the person either in private sessions or group classes using various techniques and tools such as Brain Gym, Bal-A-Vis-X, Movement Dynamics, Vision Gym, developmental games etc.