Howda Designz, howda.com
When my son Luke, 10, sat in the HowdaHug, by Howda Designz, its smooth wooden slats indeed curled around his body in a "hug." Its gentle pressure helps children with ADHD and sensory challenges maintain focus and feel calm. I asked Luke to do his reading homework in the chair, the homework that normally makes him wiggle like crazy. Instead of shaking his feet as he turned the pages, he rocked calmly and quietly. He didn't ask me how much longer he had to read. HowdaHug is lightweight and portable, so Luke can use it at school. But the slats are uncomfortable when sitting for a long period of time. To remedy this, the manufacturer offers a cozy shearling liner for the chair. Problem solved!
The Move Small's saddle-shaped seat moves with the sitter, as he tilts on the graded-disc base. It was a balancing act at first for Luke, but he benefited from the increased sensory input that many kids with ADHD need. I wanted Luke to keep his feet and legs down at the dinner table -- a tall order, as most ADHD moms know. Luke thought the Move Small was a toy when he first sat in it. He fooled with the seat-height adjustment and spun around wildly. Now Luke sits at the dinner table on it. There is less food on the floor and less disruption during dinner. Luke likes it so much, in fact, that he moves the Move Small around the house to sit on it everywhere he goes.
StayN Place Ball
The StayN Place Ball, by Abilitations, is a therapy ball with a twist -- it has extra weight inside, so it won't roll away when you get up. You have to use your core muscles to sit on it correctly and stay seated. These movements help the brain focus. Sitting on the StayN Place was a challenge for Luke. He sat on the ball to do his homework, and it focused his attention, but the StayN Place ball is best for kids with good muscular control, who don't need a lot of movement in order to focus.
This article appears in the Summer issue of ADDitude.
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