Learning to Heal Through Play: Moving to Heal (2 of 3)

“Moving to heal” can be taken quite literally.  Children can become frozen by traumatic events and need to partake in physically strenuous acts to help them unload all of the emotions that have been holding them in place.  In many of the domestic situations these children have been in, they haven’t activated their natural fight or flight response.  These chemicals remain stagnant, the process unable to be completed.

Dr. Bruce Perry, senior fellow of Child Trauma Academy recommends the following to help children release the unused chemicals:

  • Vigorous, purposeful movement experiences
  • Structure play.  Meaning that these kids are not going to benefit from the chaotic mess that is an elementary playground.

For children that are in various states of alarm, noise and chaos can be counterproductive to their healing.  The Adventurous Child recommends climbers that have all sorts of physical challenges; monkey bars, tire bridges, rock walls, etc.  If you set up a bike path, that offers children a course that they can run or ride around all that their little heart’s desire but still in a structured way.

After affected children have the opportunity to let out their anger and aggression they need the chance to be soothed or to soothe themselves.  They need to learn about responsibility, nurturing and nature through serene activities.

We’ll introduce those next time.