Monday, September 28, 2009

Building Resilience

My firstborn princess asked me yesterday why I put so much of the younger princess's skating on my blog. My answer: I love to see the skating princess stretching herself in new ways. That's exciting to me!

Figure skating lessons have given my skating princess a lot of experiences for making new discoveries. The introduction of a new skills and expectations is scary for her, and she's learning that she can handle the both the feelings and the challenge. That's a huge discovery! Those of you who are RDI(r) moms and dads understand the concept of resilience, because Dr. Gutstein talks about it so much.

I continue to be amazed at the motor planning, gross motor coordination and proprioceptive work that happens in each lesson. Each lesson builds on a previous lesson, and I see how lessons stretch and grow her in new ways.

Last week, we saw some bumps on the ice. The skills that coach was teaching her were too difficult, from the perception of my princess, and for the first time since she began taking lessons six months ago, she began asking for breaks during lessons. She began screeching a little, protesting, and even begged to go to the bathroom, something she'd not done during a lesson as an escape before.

So, Coach S. and I brainstormed. We talked about different reasons why those particular skills were sending the skating princess into retreat.

And Coach S. decided to retreat and regroup so that she could set aside for now the skills that were contributing to the bumps.

My princess does not like going backwards -- she's never liked doing anything backwards. Every OT she's had has made her walk backwards on a balance beam. She lets us know how much she hates that (and she can be *loud*!). Today, she handled skating backwards like a pro. The video I shot is too big for the blog. You'll have to trust me -- she's making some discoveries during her skating lessons.

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