Reflection of ways to improve visual processing ability(2)

Visual procession can be roughly categorized into two big groups. One is the statistic visual detail discrimination, which is the ability to perceive the fine visual details and differences between similar things. The other one is dynamic visual procession, which includes tracing and peripheral vision. This one is highly related to all sorts of dynamic physical activities, especially ball sports.

In order to improve the ability for statistic visual detail discrimination, my way of dealing with it is to train the learner to be able to tell the difference between similar pictures/figures, based on learner’s current level. When the learner can easily tell the differences, I’ll make it a little bit harder, and so on and so forth until it’s good enough to form a sound image in the brain.

For visual tracing and peripheral vision, a simple way to improve is to do heaps of ball games. All kinds of ball games are very helpful as long as the game is within their ability. Also, Rhythmic Movement Training international(RMTi) and Feldenkrais Method have helpful approaches to it. Also I’d like to recommend an air hockey table, which can be easily found in many entertainment centres. Make sure to play it with a speed that is not hard for the learner.

Among all the methods that I’ve trained or are currently in training, RMTi is the most highly recommended. It has significant yielding considering the limited investment you need to put in. The most demanding part is parents need to do the movement for/with kids for 10-15 minutes everyday. However, since the movements are simple and limited, usually the effect will reach the bottle neck in about a year or two. This is the moment when Feldenkrais method shows its advantage, because the movements are unlimited, so the stimulation to the brain is unlimited, so it has the potential to help the learner go much further. Of course, so does the price for it.

Some school kids have serious eligibility issues in their handwriting. Part of the reason could be inadequate visual processing in refined details of visual input, therefore it’s quite similar to them no matter if the handwriting is neat or not. However the mainstream strategy for it is focusing on fine motor skills and also reminders of paying extra attention to handwriting, while the possible visual processing issue is left behind. If you pay attention to their drawings, details of drawings could be very simple. The reason for that is they don’t notice many details when doing observation, so the image formed in the brain is very simple, which leads to drawing with simple details. The way I mentioned before is useful for this situation too.

That’s my reflection of my way to cope with visual processing issues, just FYI.

Reflection of ways to improve visual processing ability(1)

I have a client who’s been through the formal special education for over 10 years, combined with specialists therapies for many years, yet still couldn’t write half of the capital letters. I’ve used a method to train her to be able to perceive the refined differences between similar letters/figures, and have successfully taught her to write almost all the capital letters in about a year, with only a couple of them still in the learning process.

Usually I’ll make different forms to write a letter, combine the correct form with wrong forms, starting from big differences, then make it less different, till it’s refined enough to form a good image in the brain. When she’s able to tell the difference easily, I’ll ask her to write the image that she’s been discriminating for quite a while, without any copying/tracing. She usually can do it straight away, but occasionally needs a little bit of pushing. I’ve never ever used the traditional copying and tracing strategies in special education.

Tracing and copying is asking the trainee to trace on the letters/numbers that are already printed on papers to teach them how to write them. Although it is the most widely used method of teaching how to write letters and numbers for children of disabilities, it’s not very helpful for people with considerable visual processing issues. Such as my client, who after so many years of tracing, working really hard, had put great effort in it and yet still struggling. It’s impossible to write the letters independently if the brain hasn’t formed the image of the letter clearly, disregarding how many times tracing has been tried. It will only happen when a clear image is formed in the brain. My way is to help forming the image. When someone can observe the subtle difference between similar letters/figures, writing it down would be a very easy thing.

Let’s look back to see how to figure out if someone has obvious visual processing issue. Taking the ability of being able to perceive the refined details of what we see in everyday life for granted, it is very hard for people without visual procession issues to realize that some people are facing big challenges in this area. For some of them who have disabilities, this can be easily covered by other developmental issues and could have big impact on everyday living. My personal experience is that being able to detect the elusive visual procession difficulty is the critical first move, which is a very big topic.

I’ve read a book about half year ago:”The Woman Who Changed her Brain”,in which there is a chapter that talks about visual processing. Until then I knew that someone has already been on the path ahead of me, while her way may be more mature, my way is still in developing. In the book it mentioned that about 50% part of the brain is involved in visual processing, which means if someone has issues in this area, there should be impact on many brain functions too, vice verse , if someone gains significant improvement in visual processing, then noticeable improvement in many areas is very likely to happen.

About Yoga

This is a translated version from Lin Liangchuan’s article on facebook, the founder of his Fascia and bone adjustment method, which I am very interested in and have seen some amazing results of it. I’ve tried to get the author’s permission for publishing it but failed. Please contact me if there’s any copyright issue. (My English is not good, fortunately I’m not making a living on translation)

When I was running the former outpatient clinic, I’ve treated a lot of patients injured because of practicing Yoga, also treated a lot of yoga teachers as well, therefore I was in deep wary about Yoga. Recently I wanted to change some of the external and internal structure of the body, but my original practice encountered some bottlenecks, so I tried some other methods, including Yoga, so I have a new idea of this knowledge. What I originally practiced was mainly in the circulation of coherent body different systems, different levels of fascia. But for the adhesion between the fascia or between the tendon and the bone, to relax, I need a higher perspective or a longer period of time exercise, which is not achievable with my current experience in a short period of time. I find Yoga however could do that, but at the same time I think yoga is a very dangerous method. I practice Taiji, mainly belong to the standing work, standing, leg muscles on the bone plate involved, will make the torso movements limited, the spine and ribs are not active to the limit that they should be able to move open, so that the deepest muscle in the middle of the torso can’t be unravel, There is no way for the whole fascia system to complete the reorganization smoothly.

Nowadays Yoga teaching seems has become mainly a posture method, through the body to make a certain posture, to achieve the body structure or function of the adjustment. Yoga has a lot of action on the floor, lying on the floor can lift the leg muscle contraction, so the torso can reach its activity limit, the body can twist at various angles, so it’s easier to open different levels of fascia between the adhesion, and can increase the active angle of tendon attached to the bone. The dislocation of the body, is basically a kind of rotation, if yoga practice is good, it can gradually unravel different systems at different levels of physical problems, restore the body structure. But there are some prerequisites, the main thing is that yoga teachers or practitioners, know what their physical problems are, what they need, in order to really solve the problem, therefore it will not cause further harm.

Yoga practice needs to pose for many specific positions, there should be a lot of details to explore clearly, but also a lot of physical restoration needs to understand the knowledge, rather than yoga teacher said the posture is not correct. Correct posture is not the core of this knowledge. For the same action, because each person’s physical problems and needs are different, so each person can do the same action with different appearances. In addition, the role of breathing and the training of the body’s inner view, in the posture of the exercise, occupies a very important part. Every Yoga teacher said that the action needs to cooperate with breathing, but how to breathe, how to cooperate with the action, I did not see anyone clearly stated. Of course, this may also because I am a layman of this learning, my knowledge of it is limited.

Based on my experience in going to Yoga class and reading Yoga books, now Yoga practice has become a kind of stretching contest, it seems that the who can pose in more distorted way, is the one that practice better. Like a book I saw in a bookstore, it felt because that a Yoga practitioner could twist his body like a rubber band, known as a Yoga master, I think it’s a big problem.  From my previous experience in treating Yoga teachers, I asked them:  You did know that some movements can cause harm to your body, why did you have to do more than your limit? Their answers were usually: because students could do it, teachers couldn’t be worse than them, so they have to do it. I often ask them: teacher is to teach knowledge, which NBA basketball coach plays better than the players?

When you turn yoga into a stretching contest, it creates a lot of problems. The whole fascia system is basically not elasticity, it is generally not able to shrink or expand. It has some buffer space in the activity, but that is for use in the normal range of activities. When you stretch the skeleton to the limit, these buffer spaces disappear, all you do is to pull the fascia of other side of the body through the contraction of the muscles on one side of the body, which will only pull the body’s structure system crooked, twisted, the place that being stretched will feel relatively loose, but that is only because the body is borrowing fascia from other places to use it.

 So some of the yoga teachers I treated, as well as some senior yoga practitioners, as the results of desperately strained, the fascia at the end of the body are very tight, such as fingers, toes are very tight, so that the terminal circulation is very bad, which will suppress the kinetic energy of the heart, and on the surface although the body is very loose, But in essence, the tension drop between different layers of the fascia is very large, and the deep fascia is actually tight.

The body’s fascia system is a three-dimensional structure network, really healthy body, deep and shallow layer of the network of content, tension is to be the same, but also in the dynamic, the body of the shallow layer of all the content is the way to move according to the concentric circle, Chinese traditional method, like Taiji, is based on such principles So that the deep fascia of the body can follow the shallow slip flow. Therefore, one of the most important principles of this kind of practice is: “once move, the whole body would move, there shouldn’t be any place that will not move “.  Every part of the body moves under the same tension. This must make different levels of fascia in a concentric circle of the way to be able to do.

The way the body uses the muscle system on a daily basis is often immobilizing a certain part of the body to be the base for other part of the body to move. Such as when we have to reach for the cup, we would immobilize the muscle that holds the shoulder strap, while the arm’s muscles would shrink. Or, like walking, we would fix the muscles of the waist and pelvis, while shrinks the muscles of the legs. The use of such a way, will make the body fascia system tension is not complete, the direction of the muscle contraction of the deep and shallow layer will appear uncoordinated, in the depth of the joint tension will continue to grow. This shallow layer of muscles is in a staggered state, if the way to move with a tendon, the shallow fascia taut pull, the deep fascia system will be more tightly locked, the shallow fascia slip becomes smooth is at the expense of the dynamic nature of the deep fascia be less mobile.

Due to the wide range of activities of our limbs, the limitations are mainly from the skin and shallow fascia, stretching will make the dynamic of the shallow fascia increased, but did not follow the concentric circle of the way to make the fascia restore accordingly, so there are some people who practice yoga for a long time, actually they are afraid of the cold.

Now the yoga class, a lot of focus in the posture, only care about the position is not correct, or what can be achieved by this position, and did not pay attention to the change that the body should have during the process.

From the point of view of body structure therapy, I think the most valuable part for yoga is the process, and breathing in the process of posing and after putting on a position. In the process of posing, the action should be slow and smooth, so that the body’s fascia system has enough time to coordinate and reorganize, and when the tension in body start to appear but  has not reached the tension limit, it must stop, so that the fascia system has time to rearrange and reorganize in this position.

In practice, the teacher should know what kind of posture is more needed for students, and should know in what kind of situation, is the limit that students can do under this position, that is, how students should restore his structure, and the limits that can be restored at present, rather than always emphasizing what the benefits of these actions are to the body.

In practice, when posture is close to the limit of tension, it indicates that the pathway of body structure to restore is ready, what is needed is to, let the body rearrange under this posture, that is, the fascia system re-unlock, tendon and bone re-alignment. But the key is although the structure is ready, the body may not go as expected, then a trigger is needed to guide the fascia system to slip.  This trigger power can be of two kinds.

One is the slight flexor and extension, and shaking of the limb. The way to let the muscles relax and restore is to rotate the fascia that wraps this muscle to equal left and right tension, and the strip muscles can be loosened.  Muscle can’t be loosen, is due to the fascia system wrapping, because of the fascia system rotation, rather than the muscle itself problems, that’s why the book ”myofascial” is wrong from the very beginning till the end.

In the position that is close to the limit, do not pull the limb to the limit, slightly leave some movable space, so that the whole body can be in the direction of the longitudinal axis slight flex and extend, so that each local fascia system reorganize, the tension between the two systems across the joint becomes connected and even. A slight shake in the direction of the transverse axis allows the deeply tightened system to have the opportunity to loosen the tension and restore.

There is also a power to restore trigger that is breathing. There are two ways to breathe, one is chest breathing and the other is abdominal breathing. Chest breathing, is through pulling ribs to trigger skin and shallow fascia system to slip. Abdominal breathing, is through pulling the diaphragm to trigger viscera and other deep fascia to move, both are necessary.

The reason for Yoga to be a profound learning, is definitely not only because of its effect in physical level, but also because it’s a spiritual exercise. When in the process of posing posture, the reason for the movement need to be slow and smooth, is because to feel the process of posing, fascia system can do concentric round spread and reorganization, in the process we must feel different depth of tension changes in different parts of the body, we must be able to see and feel at the same time, of all the details of the body, in order to find their own needs of the precise angle. Problematic details in body, will appear uncomfortable tension in the course of physical activity to let the brain feel, the more peaceful the mind, the more delicate details can be felt.

Our bodies remember emotions, emotions and bodies are in a state of co-structure, and the stimulation of certain parts or muscles of the body can cause certain emotions. The appearance of that emotion can also cause changes in the contraction of muscles or hormones. In the process of physical restoring, many emotions and deep memories of life would reappear, in the exercise, if we are in a clam and quiet perspective, lots of trauma and emotions will emerge and can be seen, and gradually heal, if the heart is not calm enough, then we won’t be able to see and heal.

There is also a situation, after the posture is set, when using breathing to pull fascia, whether to use abdominal breathing first to pull deep fascia, or chest breathing to pull shallow fascia, can only be mastered when someone has a clear sense of awareness of how to restore one’s body. Breathing and slight flexural shaking, is the most important self-structural adjustment, in the process. The serenity and observation of the heart are very similar to the breathing guidance established in ancient China. As a result, yoga in the course of the exercise, gradually from both physical and mental aspects of the clear self.

In this position of the exercise process, the fascia system gradually to the position, reduction, loosening, this time the limb can gradually extend, a lot of deep adhesion can be untied, but also because of the stimulation of repeated drills, fascia system gradually reorganize growth. These are the ideas that I put forward from the point of view of the practicing structural therapist, not necessarily the original meaning of Yoga, but I think it should be well worth the reference for a modern Yoga teacher.

Lin Liangchuan

Some talks about spine therapy: chiropractic and chiropractic guns – Lin Liangchuan

This is a translated version from Lin Liangchuan’s article on facebook, the founder of his Fascia and bone adjustment method, which I am very interested in and have seen some amazing results of it. The other article about the Yoga is a better explanation of his theory, however both articles seem controversial. I’ve tried to get the author’s permission for publishing it but failed. Please contact me if there’s any copyright issue. (My English is not good, fortunately I’m not making a living on translation)

Treating the disease with just hands, working from the spine is the most common and popular practice. It is common to get instant result from it, but when looking beyond this medical point of view, although the result is instant, if we look further towards long term effect, it may be a different story.

Structurally, the body’s activities, the spine is used as a supportive part for the use of the limbs. The spine is passive in the use of the body. Except for the cervical spine, the spine does not have the opportunity and ability to actively move and change.

Unless because of injuries, the change of the form of body structure is mainly due to the structure of the limbs. It is a result of collapsed stack of peripheral muscles. The change of the feet or hands causes the vertical axis and horizontal axis to change, and the spine is changed as a result of it.

The shape of each part of the body is formed by compensating the entire three-dimensional structure network of human body, and the type of each part is interacted with and associated with this entire three-dimensional structure network. If the fascia locked at the end of the extremities is not unraveled, the tendon turning adhesion deep in the joints of the extremities is not unraveled, there is no way to truly change the entire three-dimensional structure network.

Therefore, if the fascia system of the extremities is not unraveled, direct adjustment of the pelvic spine will only disrupt the alignment of the different layers of the fascia in the trunk. It is impossible to truly change the position of the pelvis and the spine.

Regardless of the form change of the structure, or the priority of treatment, the shape of the spine and pelvis is determined, and it is only the last result, which is never the cause.

The reason for the appearance of symptoms of diseases, apart from direct nerve root compression, are all because of fascia system disorders, which make the muscle contraction dysfunction, and blockages in intestinal and visceral rhythm (so restoring the internal organs’ rhythm without seeing and restore the fascia system disorder, is just nonsense) which in turn leads the emergence of the circulatory system.

Therefore, the chiropractic theory believes that most of the dysfunction of the body is due to problems with the spine which leads to oppression of the nerves, this theory is fundamentally problematic, and their treatment does not focus on restoring the entire fascia system, but directly from the vertebrae. Disregarding the necessity of balanced tension on the whole fascia system, would make the problem more complicated.

The treatment like chiropractic, many of its effects are based on the intention of building the structure and the elimination of symptoms. There is no concept of restoration, which cannot be called a real cure. In fact, it is more like taking Panadol while having a headache.

If the palpation is done delicately, you will know that the directly adjusted pelvis and spine will be brought back to the original state by the fascia system of the limbs after patient’s slight active movements. The deep muscles beside the spine, because their alignment with outer muscles becomes worse, often aggravating the complexity of the disease, while appearing to be eliminating the symptoms.

Chiropractic gun is also a popular direct treatment of the spine, it’s a tool that can quickly generate vibrational forces at a single point.

They believe that the benefits of this tool are fast and accurate, and the strength can reach deep, and the dislocated spine can be corrected when the muscles are too late to respond.

The advantages they think are precisely the places where I think this medical point of view is most problematic. The spine is the result of the coordination of compensation of the whole system. The dislocation of the vertebral body is pulled by the whole system. By adjusting the strength of the surrounding vertical and horizontal axes is adjusted, the dislocated vertebral body will naturally return to the body and directly correct the spine. Working directly on the spine, is just dispersing the tension to other places, and even likely to increase the tension of the real problematic lesions more.  Therefore, using this tool, is a kind of disregarding cause and effect, and the treatment is of wrong priority, in addition to a brief disruption of the fascial system to eliminate symptoms, only makes more problems to complicate the disease.

Lin Liangchuan 2019.03.19 Peach Garden

Let’s talk about fine motor skill training

After working in early childhood education area for some time, I’ve seen quite some gentle or harsh fine motor skill training methods. Some of them are good will oriented yet poorly effective, in fact, some of them made the kids so frustrated that may leads to natural connection of failure with fine motor skill training, which makes the result nearer to negative effect rather than positive effect. I’ve also noticed quite some not so great fine motor skill training methods when working with people of disabilities, that’s why I’d like to share my understanding of fine motor skill training.

For pre-schoolers, some of the problematic methods I’ve seen are because of the expectation is far beyond the child’s current ability. If you try to let a pre-schooler with serious grasp issue and also with dyslexia traits or visual procession issue to copy his name or copy a word by himself without any extra help, it’s nearly impossible to have a result of satisfactory. Another important reason why the fine motor skill training in early childhood education is not getting the right point is because many educators simply believe training fine motor skills is all about the grasp and the strength of finger muscles, which is far from being comprehensive.

Fine motor skills, especially about writing, actually includes many areas. Basic impression may be just the movements of hand and fingers, actually many other parts of the body are involved too. Such as wrist, movements from wrist are very important. You can try to write without any movements from the wrist, see how hard it is to write. About the movements of fingers, it’s far more than just strength of each finger, the good timing of changing movements and coordination between fingers, the smoothness of changing finger’s strength and directions, are more important than strength alone. Try to imagine an extreme example: a people has great strength in each of his finger however the fingers are very stiff and hard to move and change direction, imagine how good the person can write with a hand like this. Therefore that’s why training the coordination of fingers and wrists are more important than training the strength. Unfortunately, many designed trainings focus too much on strength and grasp.

Another very important part of fine motor skill is shoulder and neck, which is very likely to be overlooked. All the people that I am currently working with, as long as they can write, their hand writings are all noticeably improved, and I didn’t even work with their hands and wrists. I work on shoulder and torso and other areas, which can bring much more change than just the handwriting. Pictures below is the change of handwriting from one client, who’s always using the so called incorrect grasp.


I’ve seen some recommended videos of how to train people with disabilities to do some job with hands. I noticed that when hand and arm were raised to a certain level, the whole shoulder and arm and hand were already very much stressed close to the limit, if you ask a person with serious fine motor skill issue to do any fine activity with hand in this setting, the challenge would be enormous.

Another factor that is commonly overlooked is visual procession ability. The ability of visual procession is the final guide of fine motor activity. This feedback to the brain can help the brain to adjust the body’s operation in later steps. Many kids with visual procession issue have serious handwriting difficulty, however after improving their visual procession ability, the handwriting will be automatically improved. I’ve seen a child in a preschool using the least proper grasp wrote the most beautiful letters in the entire preschool. I think it’s because he has excellent visual procession ability to compensate his weakness very well.

That’s why in my understanding, fine motor skill training, especially writing, is far more than just the grasp and the strength of fingers.

Can’t move in a symmetric way, is it because of the asymmetrical body or is it because of the brain can’t control the body in a symmetrical way?

I’m helping a little girl recently, one of the issues I’m working on is she couldn’t craw in a symmetric way, but heavily rely on her left side, which is the stronger side from top to bottom, so she crawled in a kind of side way into a shape of curved line arching left.

Since it’s quite obvious that the reason is because right side is weaker, so at the beginning I tried to train her shifting weight on the right side a couple of times, teaching the body and brain how to shifting weight from side to side, got very limited progress. Last time, I changed to train her turning pelvic vigorously to both side, and within less than 5 minutes, she’s able to crawl in a very beautiful symmetrical way into a straight line instead of an arched line.

Her muscles and muscle tone can’t change too much in such a short time, the body’s right side is still weaker comparing to left side, what has made the difference is her brain can somehow manage to control her body in a better way so despite her unbalanced body, she can still make a symmetrical movement.

This is what I learned from it: in many situations, as long as it’s not a very extreme situation, the so called weak muscle/muscle tone is actually strong enough to do many things in a good quality, as long as the brain knows how to control the body in a effective way.

A simple way of breathing to help fighting with constipation

Constipation is annoying, especially when sitting on the toilet and bower movement is not promising. Though the best way to solve constipation is to diminish the reason for it, here is a simple way that may help.

The key is being aware of the movement of your diaphragm when breathing. When breathing in, try to push the diaphragm down, thus naturally push the belly out. When breath in, let go the diaphragm, so it would go back up again, then breath in, diaphragm being pushed down, belly out, keep doing this for a few minutes. This will stimulate the bower movement, therefore reduce the constipation.

This is actually one of the most popular breathing methods, and it can help much more than just constipation. However, in many cases, the focus point is on the belly movement instead of diaphragm, which is taking the result as a method.

The best way to practice it is lying on one side of your body in bed,  make yourself feel comfortable and relaxed, also make sure there is enough room for belly movements, then practice it for several minutes. When you get used to it, you can do it in any gesture, such as when sitting on the toilet. In either way, it will help.


Brain is plastic, and can be improved via movements

When several years ago, I experienced the amazing connection between mind and body, and how movements can change the brain, I was completely thrilled, because doing simple movements for a short period of time has solved the problem that remained for years, it worked as magic. Since then, I have been keeping on walking on this path further and further. After years of learning, I’m happy to say results are rewarding, and lives around me including my own life are changing in the positive way, all these make me want to learn more and more about it. Brain is so plastic. How brain can be changed via movements is a kind of miracle. I wish I can help people more.

—————- On my way to become excellent—————-