So often, children of all ages, come to see me with spinal issues related to sympathetic dominance. Sympathetic dominance is the body’s response to living in an environment that is stressful (physically, emotionally and chemically). If children are not equipped with the skills to deal, adapt, heal and grow from the challenges they face, they learn how to compensate and stay in a permanent physiological state of stress (sympathetic dominance). This may well lead them to a variety of long-term negative effects in all systems of the body; chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, heart attacks, diabetes, strokes and cancers have sympathetic dominance as an underlying pathology.

 

Our approach to teaching adaptability skills are:

 

  1. Physically
  • Always make sure children use correct posture thereby developing great spinal stability and strength.
  • Enrol children in great exercise choices that teach them how to control and coordinate movement with calm breathing. Martial arts, yoga, gymnastics and dancing are good choices, and there are a variety of modern movement practices available (Primal Movements, MovNat, Primitive Movements etc.).
  • Practice Progressive Relaxation Techniques to teach children awareness of all parts of their body, thereby finding tension and compression and learning how to release them.
  • Avoid prolonged sedentary, especially screen, time.

 

  1. Emotionally
  • Have a daily ritual of clearing at the end of the day. We recommend a few points of conversation – what did you learn today, what are you grateful for, what will you do differently tomorrow, what will you pray for?
  • Have an Emotional Face Chart handy to discuss your children's current emotions and how to process them for Emotional Resilience.
  • Get them to understand the Bigness Within Philosophy, always bring this into the conversation in dealing with challenges that have occurred.
  • Watch and change the words they use for more positive and effective concepts. (i.e. I Can vs. I Cannot).
  • Set strong boundaries and place relevant and age-appropriate disciplines in place.

 

  1. Chemically
  • Eat whole food and clean regular meals consisting largely of raw or marginally cooked fruit and veg.
  • Be aware of high processed foods including animal products.
  • Read Food Labels.
  • Avoid dairy, sugar and stimulants.
  • Practice the 5:2 principle and teach them the purpose of food – nutrition vs. taste.
  • Consume water primarily, minimise fruit juices, avoid soft and carbonated drinks.

 

Get your child checked by a Chiropractor regularly to clear the stress and interferences to normal development. Research shows that Chiropractic Care regulates sympathetic dominance and promotes a healing, calm and organised state.

 

FOOTNOTES

 

Primal Movements, MovNat, Primitive Functional Movements

  • All of these are found on Google using these keywords

 

Emotional Face Chart

  • Google Emotional Face Chart and click on the images.
  • Print out a few different options that give the best facial expressions to the given emotions.
  • Hand this to your children and ask which expression they relate to.
  • Give them a red pen and get them to circle the face(s) that are the most appropriate to how they are feeling.
  • Ask if they know why they are feeling this way.
  • If they are experiencing negative feelings, ask them what would be the opposite feeling; or how would they like to feel?
  • Give them a blue pen and get them to circle the face(s) that show that opposite or desired feeling.
  • Have a conversation with them on “The Bigness Within Philosophy” https://www.aspirehappyness.co.za/blog/happyness/bignesswithin-philosophy

 

Food Labels

 

5:2 principle

  • 5 days in the week teach your child to commit to healthy eating. The other 2 days reward their discipline with the moderation of their vices. Both discipline and moderation teach powerful skills.
  • Teach your child what is healthy to eat and the benefits for their body, and that these are the foods we eat the majority of the time, and in abundance.
  • Teach your child that their treats should be savoured and enjoyed; consume only on weekends and in small quantities.

The first bite of something delicious is great, the second bite is where the brain completely enjoys the experience. The third and remaining bites have no additional benefits and this is where cravings are neurochemically trained in as addictions.