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Seven Year Old with Poor Co-ordination?

(10 Posts)
CrikeyOReilly Mon 26-Nov-12 22:46:22

Hi. grin I've only just joined so forgive me for leaping straight in with a question.

DS1 is just 7 and is honestly one of the clumsiest children I have ever seen. He can fall over from a standing position. He regularly falls off his chair at meal times. He's had swimming lessons since he was born (formal lessons since he was three) and STILL cannot swim without floats - children get moved out of his class all the time but he remains. He can't throw or catch at all.

His handwriting is OK (bad end of normal for a boy) but his drawing is really good. He can get dressed reasonably well but is a horribly messy eater. He walked 'early' at 11 months and met all his milestones on time as a baby. He is bright, very good verbally but an average reader.

What I would like to know is how normal is this?? I've never been hung up on what he SHOULD be doing but now I'm wondering if I've been too laid back?? A friend of mine suggested dyspraxia but, as far as I know, he would have to have accompanying developmental delays or learning problems and he hasn't. But then FOUR YEARS of swimming lessons with no progress??

Any suggestions?? Or soothing stories of clumsy boys?? wink

fidelma Tue 27-Nov-12 02:12:01

I don't know other than I am a dance teaher. I would keep challenging him physically. There is something called brain gym, our school uses it,the children love it.
My dc always are more clumsy when they have grown.

Parietal Tue 27-Nov-12 02:44:48

Don't do brain gym. It is a waste of time & money.

Dyspraxia, also known as developmental coordination disorder, affects up to 5% of children but is not well diagnosed or recognised by teachers & health professionals.

If your child's clumsiness is making him unhappy or affecting his schoolwork, then you could investigate dyspraxia & get a referral from your gp

But if it is only the swimming lessons (not drawing or other skills), then maybe the swimming teacher is a bit rubbish?

Parietal Tue 27-Nov-12 02:46:27

Also, diagnosis of dyspraxia is based on "motor control problems without other learning difficulties".

laozi Fri 30-Nov-12 21:24:40

Hi, I just posted on another thread about much the same question. My DS got a diagnosis for dyspraxia recently, and it's been really helpful. Have you looked at the dyspraxia foundation's website? here.

CrikeyOReilly Sat 01-Dec-12 22:13:45

Thanks all.

We've had several swimming teachers, all pretty rubbish!

There are some other motor issues - he is quite breathtakingly bad at sport, except for climbing, but he doesn't seem bothered about it.

Brain Gym is not something I can buy into, I'm afraid, as I've read too much about it being quackery.

I am not really sure that the clumsiness is something that bothers him necessarily. It bothers him when I am constantly having to tell him to stand up instead of staggering around, if we are in a queue for example. But I don't honestly know if it is something that bothers me more than it bothers him. I don't know if dragging him to the doctors and making him hyper-aware of it all would just make him miserable about something he can't control.

I don't know. I don't want to push it for no reason.

CrikeyOReilly Sat 01-Dec-12 22:41:58

I would also add, that he is terrible at invading people's personal space. I feel that this is definitely something inherent rather than a learned behaviour as I almost have a forcefield around me!

Ineedalife Sun 02-Dec-12 13:07:32

Hi crikey your Ds needs an occupational therapy assessment. You have to be referred for these or your can go private.

I would recommend making some notes about his co ordination issues and go to your GP, you probably wont even need to take him. You are only asking for a referral, your GP probably wont know much about dyspraxia.

The waiting list will be long so I would do it soon. If your Ds is dyspraxic he might need some extra support at secondary school so I would get the ball rolling even if he is not that bothered at the moment, he will become more aware as time goes on.

As far as Brain Gym goes, actually it can have benefits for children with co ordination difficulties. Dd3's school does Activate which has elements of Brain gym in it. The point is that it gets the child working different parts of their body at the same time and this is never going to be a waste of time.
Dd3's co ordination has improved a lot since doing Activate.

Is your Ds very bendy? Because it is quite common for dyspraxic children to have hypermobile joints.This can cause them to be floppy and fall alot. Dd3 used to fall over her own shadowgrin but since she has had orthotics in her shoes to support her bendy ankles she hardly ever falls.

Priopreception difficulties can occur with dyspraxia and this literally means the person doesnt know where they are in space. This can lead to them being in other peoples space.


Good lucksmile

CrikeyOReilly Thu 13-Dec-12 23:35:24

Thanks a lot. Sorry I haven't replied before.

I have made some notes and I will ring the school, I think, in the new year and see if they have an opinion. I still don't know myself if it's 'bad enough' to go to the doctors with.

He IS quite bendy - I am also quite bendy - so that had occurred to me too. We also have a history of flat feet etc. in the family which can be connected to hypermobility.

PoptartPoptart Fri 14-Dec-12 19:57:13

Ask to speak with the school SENCO, explain your concerns and ask her to refer your DS for an occupational therapy assessment. My DS was referred and we had to wait about a month for an assessment. The OT team were great. From what you've described, I personally think it may be dyspraxia. Many children have this and it can vary in severity from child to child. OT will definitely be able to advise you. Good luck

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