Brain Gym is a series of movements, done with intention and designed to ‘wake-up’ the brain or to stimulate brain function. Its focus is improved learning and mental organization. The idea is that these are simple exercises that anyone can do at home or at work or at school and they are often used with children who have special needs or need to improve their learning ability. They are designed to strengthen the relationship between body and mind and so are particularly interesting in this time when so many of our activities are cerebral.
# Cross Crawl
Sit or stand and with your right hand elbow touch your left knee diagonally across your body. In the same way, repeat this exercise with your left hand touching your right knee. Alternate the directions as in a march-past. Ensure that you touch the knee with your elbow completely and properly. Repeat this for 2-3 minutes.
# Lazy Eights
Extend you arm straight out in front of you. It should be equal to your shoulder level. With your thumb pointing toward the ceiling, slowly and smoothly trace the shape of a large figure 8. While drawing the 8, try to focus your eyes on the thumb.
# Brain Buttons
There are two hollow areas under your collarbone which is about 1 inch out from the Centre of your chest. Using your thumbs and fingers of one hand, rub these areas vigorously for 50 seconds while rest your other hand over your navel as you look from left to right.
# Positive Points
Gently touch the points above the eye halfway in between the eyebrow and the hairline using your fingertips of each hand. Close your eyes. Breathe deeply and slowly for few seconds. Now release, relax and repeat this for 3 times.
Hook-Ups are specifically used for children or adults that have great amounts of stress, anxiety, meltdowns or sensory overload. It’s a great activity to calm the body and help your child control their breathing. You can complete this exercise standing (preferred), sitting or lying down on the ground. If your child is standing, have them cross one foot over the other (legs always straight). Now, have your child stretch out their arms and cross them in front of their body. As they are crossed, have the palms of the right and left hands touch together and lock fingers. Have your child loop the hands underneath the arms and pull the arms close to the chest (twisted into a pretzel).Hold this position for 2 to 5 minutes or for as long as they need to calm the body.