Everybody loves a bit of magic – the mystery, sleight of hand, skill and theatre of the whole thing are just great entertainment.
So when we heard about kids with hemiplegia using magic tricks as part of therapy, we needed more info.
What we found was Breathe Arts Health Research, an organisation that runs magic clubs and courses for children with hemiplegia (the condition that affects one side of the person’s body).
The clever people at Breathe realised that there was a lot magic could do for these kids.
Firstly, it’s teaching them some pretty cool skills. They love dazzling their little buds with their tricks and enthralling a whole audience. We would love to be able to do that. It will do wonders for anybody’s self-esteem and confidence, which is a good enough reason to get any child involved with magic.
But there’s more. The complex tricks and illusions pose a challenge for the kids’ motor skills, so they get a real strength, dexterity and coordination workout. All the tasks and and tricks involved are carefully planned to incorporate movements and tasks that children with hemiplegia find difficult, forcing them to take on these challenges and develop their skills.
It’s intensive too – the courses run for 6 hours each day for a period of ten days – so the children are really pushed to develop new abilities. And they don’t even realise they are taking part in therapy, it’s so much fun that it feels like they are a million miles away from the gruelling hours of work they might associate with typical therapy sessions.
And it doesn’t stop at Magic. The guys at Breathe run other arts projects to entertain and engage hospital patients through music, poetry and theatre.
We are very impressed.
Keep up the good work, folks!
Have you had to leave a venue early due to lack of suitable changing facilities?