Lever Learning has formed a collaboration with specialized physiotherapists and offers 5 seminars based on the Βοbath-NDT method (Neuro-Developmental Treatment).
The Bobath-NDT method was developed from 1950 onwards by Karel and Berta Bobath, a doctor and physiotherapist, respectively. The two of them introduced a new kinesiotherapy method, initially for adults and later for children with cerebral palsy. The method quickly caught on and was applied to most cases of patients with neuromuscular disorder, making it the most widespread method today. In the 1970s, pediatric neurologist Dr E. Kohn and physiotherapist M. Quinton contributed their experience with infants up to 12 months of age and stressed the importance of early intervention by means of NDT in newborns and infants.
Bobath/NDT is an entirely personalized method for retraining children with mobility problems and is mainly based on the below neuro-developmental principles:
Normal movement requires normal muscle tone, however the latter is disrupted when there is brain damage, i.e. when there is a CNS disorder.
Development occurs in a cephalocaudal direction (i.e. from the center to the periphery), and depends both on the maturity of the CNS and on genetic factors, as well as on various manipulations and the environment in which it takes place.
The Bobath/NDT method relies on having good knowledge of an infant’s normal development. It is applied through techniques/manipulations that hinder the pathological movement pattern and facilitate the production of movement that is as close as possible to normal. In this way, children are taught normal movement and are given the sensory-motor experience arising from it, using a combination of obstruction and facilitation as the mechanism that will lead to the learning of voluntary active movement through constant repetition.
Manipulation is applied to key points of the body, which may be central (e.g. shoulders) or peripheral (e.g. hands). The therapist assesses the child’s reactions, while at the same time determining what is responsible for the obstruction of normal muscular tone and movement, so that treatment can be scheduled and both long- and short-term goals can be set. Reassessment is necessary in order to ensure the effectiveness of the treatment.
It is of primary importance to the treatment program that the entire team working with the child cooperate: the pediatrician, the pediatric neurologist, the pediatric orthopedist, the physiotherapist, the occupational therapist, the speech therapist, the special education teacher, the psychologist and the social worker. Finally, the participation of parents in the treatment of the child is crucial, which makes it all the more important for them to understand the principles of NDT/Bobath. The application of certain elements of the method at home by the parents plays a vital role in the success of the treatment. By working together as a team, they can give children with mobility problems the help they need in order to have the future they deserve.
An NDT physiotherapist assesses the variations and quality of functional motor activity. Being well-versed in the normal development of a child, the physiotherapist detects the problems in the child’s gross and fine motor skills. S/he then prepares and integrates motor characteristics that are lacking or abnormally expressed. Finally, the physiotherapist plans and implements an individualized treatment program, and recommends special aids in cooperation with the other members of the rehabilitation team.
The NDT occupational therapist assesses how the sensory-motor disorder interferes with the child’s skills when it comes to playing, school, self-care and social relations. The aim of occupational therapy is to detect and assess skills related to hand functionality, self-care, recreation, playing and pre-vocational skills. The NDT occupational therapist plans and implements a treatment intervention by studying—in detail—the parts of an activity that hinder the child.
The NDT speech therapist assesses and analyses the sensory-motor disorders in the primary functions of the mouth (functions related to feeding) and in the child’s communication skills. Stance and gait disorders are directly connected to feeding and speech disorders, and therefore the NDT speech therapist recommends a treatment intervention that prepares the child, in a holistic motor-sensory manner, for activities related to feeding, articulation and phonation. Whenever necessary, the therapist recommends alternative communication solutions.
Basic principles of neuro-developmental treatment
There are 5 training seminars based on this method