Porter had his second session today with his new occupational therapist. He had an even better time this session as she’s getting to know what works best with him. She says he’s all prop (pronounced prope), meaning proprioceptive. Proprioceptive sense is one of the near senses.
According to the Out-of-Sync Child, by Carol Stock Kranowitz, the five senses we’re all familiar with (think XTC’s Senses Working Overtime - See, Hear, Smell, Touch, Taste) are called the far senses because the stimuli comes from outside the body. She also identifies three additional senses, the near senses - Vestibular, Tactile and Proprioceptive senses. These near senses, by contrast, “react to what is happening in our own bodies.”
The Vestibular sense is the inner ear and concerns movement, gravity and balance. The Tactile sense is in the skin and concerns processing information about touch. The Proprioceptive sense is in the muscles, ligaments and joints and concerns body position and body parts.
It is this last one that Porter’s OT believes to be most out of sync. It is why Porter loves to crash into things, be squeezed or squished and hang upside down or be swung around. It appears to be sensory feedback that Porter is dysfunctional with, as he seems to crave stimulation rather then shy away from it as a person with inefficient, instability or insecurity of movement would do.
Swingtime for Porter.
Here’s a Quicktime movie of Porter swinging on the trapeze at his occupational therapy session. You can either download the movie to your desktop or just click on the link to play it in your web browser (assuming your web browser has the quicktime plug-in installed).