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Research into Practice: A study of safety and tolerability of rotatory vestibular input for preschool children

The answer to a question on SI4OT, a FB group for OT’s curated by our social media team, includes this interesting article.

This study was focussing on the vestibular system, and the researchers tried to work out the exact amount of vestibular input needed in therapy. The results strongly suggest that it is very individualised and requires direct therapist observation to know. This is exactly in line with Ayres’ teachings. There is no exact amount that can be prescribed

A study of safety and tolerability of rotatory vestibular input for preschool children

The use of sensory input to support function, health and wellbeing is an art and a science.

The science is knowing for instance that habituation of tactile input to Ruffini nerve ending is usually fairly rapid – eg light touch as we put arms in shirt sleeves while habituation to pain receptors will vary a lot and maybe ongoing after tissue damage we can’t always see.

The art is that our response to sensory input to sensory systems will vary greatly and is very individualised. This response is not just linked to immediate registration and perception of the input – meaning and memory need to be considered too.  Think about happy smells and songs that stay in your head all day. Think too about the response to trauma when a person smells their abuser’s perfume.

There is no recipe for how much to give and when. This is the art and science of ASI. So many factors impact on what a person needs and when to have an adaptive response.

This is why sensory input is not just something you can prescribe someone by saying;

“Give Jane 20 mins on a swing 3x a day” 

gray swing

Essential to practice is the person’s response to sensory input – Do they have an adaptive response?

“Ayres (1972b) described the adaptive response as central to praxis intervention. Adaptive responses are purposeful actions directed toward a goal that is successfully achieved, and the production of adaptive responses is thought to be inherently organizing for the brain. Ayres (1972b, 1985) further emphasized that SI intervention was a transaction among client, task, and environment.”

Bundy, A. and Lane, S. [2019], Sensory Integration Theory and Practice, 3rd Edition, [Philadelphia]. Available from: FADavis.

Watching and seeing this response to input, alongside feedback from the parents/family/person is what we do to understand each person’s unique responses and pattern. However, knowing and remembering that many things can impact on this, day to day and even minute by minute is essential. 

 

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Question: If I do the ASI WISE CLASI CASI programme, do I call myself a Practitioner or Advanced Practitioner?

“I am an OT and I’m interested in becoming an ASI Practitioner with your programme? What does ICEASI Level 2 mean and is it the same as other Practitioner and Advanced Practitioner courses? What do I call myself on completion of the ASI Wise CLASI CASI Programme, Practitioner or Advanced Practitioner as some of my colleagues have done Advanced Practitioner training and can’t see the difference? Thank you. Jo.”

Hi Jo

Thank you for your question. I would suggest that you describe or sign yourself on reports as

Jo Blogs

Occupational Therapist with Certification in Ayres’ Sensory Integration (ICEASI Level 2).

This would clearly describe your profession, while also describing your training in Ayres’ Sensory Integration to be able to know and understand the neuroscience and theory, be able to provide comprehensive assessment including with standardised norm-referenced tools, able to use clinical reasoning to develop a hypothesis to support intervention planning, delivery and measurement of progress/outcomes in line with ICEASI Level 2 Certificate level Outcomes.

Compentancy in SI
©ICEASI 2017 in Mori et al 2017, AOTA OTP Volume 22 Issue 12 p 8 – 13.

Not all terms used abroad are the same as here in the UK or Ireland. Practitioner and Advanced Practitioner refer to terms historically used and linked to a specific programme. At international meetings, representatives from many international organisations have tried to establish an international standard for education in ASI. Programmes that meet criteria for ICEASI Level 2 will equate to a therapist having learnt and applied knowledge and skills to assess, interpret and clinically reason to practice – being able to provide and reflect on intervention using the principles of Ayres’ SI.

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Our Directors; Amanda Adamson, Kath Smith and Ros Urwin have been meeting up and collaborating with colleagues from across the globe at international conferences and forums. For many years, they have represented ASI education in the UK and Ireland, actively contributing to the development of the learning standards. Read more here

Completion of ASI WISE’s CLASI CASI modular programme will mean therapists are grounded in, know and understand seminal theory and history of ASI and are aware of and can apply current research and evidence in practice, meeting ICEASI Level 2 criteria.

This will include the ability to understand in detail, use and apply a wide range of assessment tools and methods to clinically reason how to provide intervention to anyone of any age and in any clinical setting; including how to use and interpret the current “gold standard tool” the SIPT (Sensory Integration and Praxis Test), with learning about a new test in development the EASI (Evaluation of Ayres’ Sensory Integration).

Please see our shop for more information about our modules and other workshops supporting the learning of therapists wanting to practice Ayres’ Sensory Integration.

You can read more about feedback about our workshops and courses on our pages.