Shawn, with cerebral palsy, enjoys bouncing & swinging!

The video shows Shawn P., who has cerebral palsy, swinging, spinning, and bouncing with the help of his mom in the Merry Muscles Therapeutic Exerciser.

Shawn got his exerciser in 1984.  At that time it was called the Maribelle Exercise Assist System–MEAS.  Shawn lived in Michigan, and was one of the first customers in the USA to use the device.  His parents made the video in 1988, long before digital recording was common!  Shawn and his parents gave permission to share this demonstration for the benefit of others looking for therapy for cerebral palsy.

Shawn is in one of the two seats that comes with the exerciser.  This is the bucket seat which is designed to hold the disabled in a comfortable upright position, while exercising the legs.  Users who have spent years in a wheelchair not only ENJOY the freedom of swinging and bouncing, but develop head and trunk control, eye-hand co-ordination, fewer extensor spasms, and the ability to return themselves to normal sitting IF an extension spasm does strike them.

Notice that the bouncing and spinning movements are VERY gentle.  Spinning for sensory integration needs to be controlled and limited, as Angie Voss, OT, explains in detail in her excellent article “The Effects of Spinning on the Brain”.