Rhythmic Movement Training is a motor training program developed on the basis of the spontaneous rhythmic movements that infants normally do. Dr Harald Blomberg has based his program on rhythmic exercises that he learnt in 1985 from a Swedish body therapist, Kerstin Linde. Experience from working with severely motor handicapped children made him conclude that the spontaneous rhythmic baby movements are of fundamental importance both for motor abilities and for development of many faculties e.g. speech, emotions and vision and are necessary for the maturation of the infant´s brain.
When Rhythmic Movement Training is used with children and adults with less severe challenges it will improve motor abilities and motor control such as coordination, muscle tone and integration of primitive reflexes. Additionally many people have noticed improvement in different areas such as speech, vision and difficulties with attention, hyperactivity, reading and writing. According to the hypothesis of Dr Harald Blomberg this improvement can be explained by the stimulation and linking up of different parts of the brain caused by the rhythmic exercises.
To be effective the rhythmic exercises need to be done regularly at least five days a week. Depending on the progress of the client the exercises need to be developed or replaced by follow up movements on a regular basis.
The effects caused by the rhythmic exercises may sometimes be noticed after a short period but the changes may not be lasting until the different parts of the brain have been sufficiently stimulated and linked up. This usually takes at least three to six months. In children with more severe challenges it may take a year or more. Some children, especially those with ASD, need to be on a gluten and/or casein free diet to get optimal effect of Rhythmic Movement Training.
Some children and adults get emotional reactions during the training and may not want to do the exercises. If this happens the training program usually needs to be changed.