I have a 5 year old boy who was diagnosed with asd at the age of 4. Can put up to 3 words together and loves all activities. Has anyone tried martial arts ? Football or swimming? Did you find it beneficial ?
He could be shy and timid because of sensory overload or communication difficulties or both, so see how he is in noisy busy environments.
As a very, very general statement, activities that rely on group work like team sports where every player has to know what the others are doing and anticipate and communicate with each other while the action is happening are a lot harder for kids with ASD.
Martial arts, swimming, horse-riding, gymnastics and other sports and activities which concentrate on the individual are much better for kids with ASD because they only need to concentrate on themselves.
Martial arts is a fantastic way to build confidence, however make sure its the right place for him, many places offer lower prices and such but Ive seen many of these as an ego or bully gym. Ive even seen people who were told they had to fight on their first lesson. In my experience martial arts is one of the best ways a child can build their confidence and self worth. Check out the academies and the instructors there before joining, you should see many children there with plenty of smiles and confidence, not fear of punishment
An autism organisation in my area organises thinks like lego clubs for children etc. Its good as everyone is in the same boat and makes allowances for the other children. And the people organising it are understanding if any issues come up.
My eldest is 9 and has ASD and DD is 6 they are both hypermobile and require physio daily. This causes absolute meltdowns for my son. We bring doing a Korean Martial Art called Kuk Sool Won for about 28 months. My son's balance and concentration has improved dramatically. They use yoga and breathing techniques. They do sparring but only in full protection. It's very routined and I cannot praise it enough...if you let me know where you are I can ask The Master where your nearest Dojang is based! The kids are now red belts and my son managed the testing element well!!! My daughter stopped ballet and they both do Kuk Sool twice a week. If you ask he what she wants to be when she grows up... It's an awesome ninja!!!!
You could ask other parents on the forums of Autism West Midlands or Resources for Autism or Contact West Midlands or, if you are on Facebook, look for Square Pegs West Midlands - a small charity started by a Mum of dc with autism, who meet for coffee mornings and share information about what is happening locally.
Hi ..my 6year old son has autism..has very little speech and we have just discovered horse riding..he loves it!..ut really helps his core strength and he's very serene whilst on the horse.hes taken for 15mins slowly around the forest and he enjoys the sensory aspect too..its quite far from my house ..45min drive but so worth it to see him happy.. my local stables are in rusilip and it's £10 for 15mins..which seems short but isn't..next time I'm going to try 30mins ..that costs £17..he doesn't fidget once and the staff are really good with him