A whole new way to engage autism

Welcome parents, caregivers, and professionals! Our new nonprofit invites your engagement in services that provide support, guidance, and education. We’re here to empower young families living with autism.

Your relationship with your child is so important to his social and emotional well being — now and throughout his lifetime. You spend the most time living with and loving your child. You have the greatest commitment to his development and lifelong happiness. But autism can make it hard to connect with your child. And because each child expresses autism in an individual way, it can be a confusing, frustrating, and time consuming process to find ways to support your child’s specific needs. We know. We’re there too.

We believe that parents are the key to lifelong success for children living with autism. It is, after all, a diagnosis that involves the whole family. Our volunteer board of directors, our writers and our presenters are all personally engaged with autism. It is this personal connection that fuels our passion for sharing, with you, what we know. We are dedicated to building bridges between research, practice and everyday life. It is at this center that engagement, true engagement, begins.

Here, families are the center. We offer education from experts,  how the latest research affects your family, and strategies that benefit your child. And we’re always looking for ways to grow. Explore with us the many possibilities of living with autism.

We’re here to help foster your child’s growth and development – and realize the joy of nurturing your child. Join our blog where we provide a place for everyone to learn and grow.

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Yoga and Autism: Emotional Regulation

Our final class in our summer yoga series focused on emotional regulation. Given the timing – weeks (or days) before the start of a new school year – parents were eager to learn all they could to move their child (and themselves) into a calmer place.

First, the class learned that when we are happy, our breathing is rhythmic, and when we are stressed it is irregular and interrupted. The fastest way to calm the mind is through the breath, so focusing all calming strategies on learning good breathing techniques is the first priority.

Breathing Techniques for Kids

  1. “HA” breath – take a deep breath while reaching your arms up. Sigh the breath out with a “HAAAA” as you bring your hands in front of your belly.
  2. Puppy breath for anger – place your palms up in front of you, stick your tongue out and beat like a puppy (panting).
  3. Lion’s breath for anger – come onto your knees, rock forward, landing on your hands as you stick your tongue out and say “AAAHHHHH” like a lion.
  4. Other calming techniques – blowing bubbles, blowing out “candles” (use your finger as the candle), create a balloon belly by blowing up your belly like a balloon, alternate nostril breathing

We then learned a series of yoga poses designed for emotional regulation. The most important pose for calming is forward fold. Combining that pose with lion’s breathe and a terrific, in-the-moment calming strategy. While standing, take a deep breath in, release the breathe in a lion “AAAHHHH” while folding forward and swing your arms back and forth. Repeat if necessary.

Interested in a family yoga class? Take our survey and let us know, so we can design one that meets your needs!

Join us for our next Lecture Series class – Autism and Language Arts on September 28!


Yoga for Autism: Digestion

So many kids living with autism struggle with digestive issues. That’s exactly why we were excited about our last Lecture Series – Yoga for Autism: Digestion. Finding gentle but effective ways to ease your child’s discomfort and kickstart better overall health was the main theme of the class. Jessica Jenness started off by introducing the Ayurveda concept of “digestive fire.”

Our goal is a balanced digestive fire but some people have “high fire,” “low fire,” or “irregular fire.” We learned ways to dampen a high fire through cooling foods or spark a low fire through adding spices.

Foods for a balanced digestion

  • Ghee (Clarified butter) is healing to the digestive system
  • Kitchari is a meal used for cleansing and healing properties
  • Ginger is a warming food that is good for digestive health

The class then moved into a tailored yoga practice that leads to a balanced digestive system. Poses that help with digestion are twisting poses, belly down poses, inversions and grounding poses. Whether your child has constipation, diarrhea or irritable bowels, these poses can provide relief and healing.

A quick set of poses that can give relief

Join us for our final Yoga for Autism class on August 22! We will be focusing on yoga poses that promote emotional regulation. More information here.

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