Water-based method to improve your child's physical and mental development

More gains from regular use

WaterWayBabies started out as just that – a water therapy system for babies. Soon, we expanded to include toddlers up to age 5 yrs. And before too long, due to parent requests, we now offer the X-Large neck ring and so far, we don’t even know the upper weight limit. A 13 y.o., 75 lb young man is the largest, oldest to use it thus far!

As time has passed and use has extended to older kids, we are becoming aware of additional health benefits from repeated use over time. (1) One young client now has a cough-gag reflex…something she did not have a year ago before starting WWB therapy. (2) The teen mentioned above has scoliosis, which many special needs kids do – and frozen hips – but its improving because he is able to stretch and move in the water using his neck ring for head support.

Respiratory failure is the most common health complication for children who have compromised motor skills. A cough reflex can be a life and death matter!

Avoidance of corrective surgery for orthopedic deformities is another significant benefit of daily work in therapeutically warm water.

Frequent, daily use is the key. And water temperature of 92-94 degrees F for best benefit. Although, 88-90F may be adequate for older children. Don’t expect miracles right away. But you will see them! Just keep at it. Every child, every diagnosis is different…progress and outcomes vary….

Catching up….Fall 2010

During the summer, WaterWayBabies transitioned to Facebook where you can go to see more videos, look at more pictures, converse, and keep up on the latest news in warm water therapy. Just friend Nancy Higgs and since I have a personal FB page, be sure to pick the one with a profile picture of me putting the neck ring on baby Robert. See you there!

Since the summer posting, WWB has expanded across Canada to Ottawa and multiple cities in Quebec as well as Malaysia and Singapore; Kangaroo Valley, Australia; Braga, Portugal; Ireland; and even Islamabad, Pakistan! Maybe Obama’s team should consult us. :)

Our coverage in the US continues to grow and expand as well.

Summer 2010

WaterWayBabies is on the move this summer!!

Just got back to TX after a longggg road trip to – first – Scottsdale, AZ, for the Micro/Lissencephaly Family Convention (www.childrenwithmicro.org). More than 225 attendees from across the US and also, this year, a family from Switzerland and another from Portugal. All enjoyed the lovely Fairmont Scottsdale where it was held. Lots of learning from the programs, evaluations by professionals, and fun to be had with their new WaterWayBabies neck rings in the 4(!) inviting swimming pools onsite. A great bonding opportunity with other families. The organization is moving to an every-other-year schedule in order to devote more resources to grant funding and research. So, start saving your pennies for 2012!

From there, the next weekend was spent in Santa Clara, California, at the Families with SMA (spinal muscular atrophy; www.fsma.com) Conference. Nearly 300 researchers attended from all over the world! Lots and lots of WaterWayBabies neck rings were sold here as well, including professionals who bought them for their patients. Very special.

Both of these are great ways to meet others who are dealing with the same things….to share and learn from one another…and to make special friends as well as gain knowledge.

While I was on the road, WaterWayBabies added to its worldwide outreach with first orders filled to:

Israel, Brazil, South Korea, Scotland, and Victoria, BC.

Thanks to ALL for continuing to help spread the word about how warm water therapy can benefit babies and children who struggle with movement…. how this inexpensive method can be used at home as well as by your child’s PT, if you are so lucky as to have access to aquatic therapy services in your area. Keep talking, keep sharing! THANKS, Nancy

Watch aquatic therapy instructional video

Feb 2010 News & Thoughts

Recently, I visited The Anat Baniel Center in San Rafael, California. I went specifically to meet clients who took their son for the first time. I also observed therapy sessions with other infants and children.

Anat studied and trained for years under Dr. Feldenkrais. She uses the foundations of his method and has adapted certain revisions. I am a nurse, not a therapist, and therefore do not endorse any particular therapeutic approach. However, I must say that I was impressed with what was achieved with each child, all different ages and different diagnoses.

I recommend that, if searching for therapies to help your child, you explore the Anat Baniel method. Simply google it.

Movement is important. It stimulates the body and the mind, cognition and the vestibular system. The vestibular system orients us to where we are in space, and without its function, we are helpless. Therapists move a child’s limbs and body, and help the child achieve positioning that cannot be attained otherwise.

Waterwaybabies helps in a different and complimentary way. With gravitational forces removed, a child is free to move his or her own limbs voluntarily. Sometimes the movements are subtle, especially at first, but all movement is beneficial. And voluntary movement is crucial in two ways. First, as a stimulant to the vestibular system as well as neuro-pathways that connect the muscles and brain. Secondly, and uniquely, the child gains confidence and a sense of independence through self-movement in the warm water. This latter aspect means everything to a human being – child and (observing) parent alike.

Remember to explore and use multiple approaches and modalities to help your child.

2010: New year, renewed hope

Dear Parents, Family members, and Professional Peers,

I hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday season! 2009 was a hard year for most of us in all sorts of ways…. However, it is a new year with fresh beginnings.

I recently received a heartwarming email from one of my customers who purchased the system back in the summer. You can read what Whitney wrote on my “Testimonial” page! Her experience reminded me to offer reassurance to all of you who strive daily for your child’s gains and improvements. I’ve said this before, but keep the faith and never give up. Sometimes it seems no progress is being made and then, seemingly in an instant, your child experiences a big leap in development or strength or cognition or whatever.

Everything you do counts. So, just do what you can. If you stop, start again. If you slow your pace due to all life’s other pressures, don’t feel guilty. Something is better than nothing…so keep it manageable for YOU. Because if you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be your best to take care of your child. I realized this early on as a single mom.

Please share your stories of continued hope and improvement so others can be supported and encouraged. This blog is for you!

WaterWayBabies sales rose almost 300% from summer to fall of 2009! BIG THANKS to all of you who helped spread the word about the benefits of swim therapy for our special children. It is WaterWayBabies’ mission is to help developmentally delayed children around the world.

Blessings to all for a good 2010!

Happy Holidays to all my WaterWayBabies, WaterWayKids, and their moms & dads

I wish for all of you a blessed holiday season, good health & wellness, and much to look forward to in the New Year. WaterWayBabies’ mission is to help all special children around the globe. During this holiday season, we were excited to be a #1 gift choice for many families. We were touched by the generosity of others – especially one gift given anonymously from someone to a child she’d never met. The world is full of thoughtful, generous people!

During the month of December, we shipped to far reaches such as Tasmania, Ireland, and Mexico, as well as crisscrossing the US. Nancy was interviewed for WABCswim, an international organization of infant/children swim instructors. More and more, aquatic therapists are reaching out to WaterWayBabies and placing their own orders, or facilitating their clients’ orders. Word continues to spread and grow! That could not happen without our loyal parents and happy “kid customers” – so a big THANK YOU to all for helping to tell others in need.

Swim therapy helps in many ways. Muscles are strengthened, toned, and stretched. The brain is stimulated through the increased activity and the vestibular system. The lungs expand more fully as a result of exercise and improved chest wall tone. The neck and trunk tone benefit from the child’s ability to move, rotate, and extend with support from the neck floatation device. Digestion is improved, regurgitation decreased, and weight gain supported. Best of all, the child experiences increased confidence and autonomy in the warm water unlike anything he or she can accomplish outside the water.

All this results in BIG SMILES & HAPPY GRINS for babes, kids, moms, dads, siblings, and grandparents alike!

It does take time and for that, my hat is off to all you parents who give to your children abundantly and unselfishly, showing your love, and working to insure your child’s best health. Give yourselves a big pat on the back – you deserve it!

God’s Way

When God wants a great work done in the world or a great wrong righted, He goes about it in a very unusual way. He doesn’t stir up his earthquakes or send forth his thunderbolts. Instead, He has a helpless baby born, perhaps in a simple home and of some obscure mother. And then God puts the idea into the mother’s heart, and she puts it into the baby’s mind. And then God waits. The greatest forces in the world are not the earthquakes and the thunderbolts. The greatest forces in the world are babies.

E. T. Sullivan

Heaven’s Special Child

A meeting was held quite far from Earth,

It was time again for another birth.

Said the Angels to the Lord above –

“This special child will need much love.

Her progress may be very slow,

Accomplishments she may not show.

And she’ll require extra care

From the folks she meets down there.

She may not run or laugh or play,

Her thoughts may seem quite far away.

So many times she will be labeled

‘different’, ‘helpless’ and disabled.

So, let’s be careful where she’s sent. We want her life to be content.

Please, Lord, find the parents who

Will do a special job for you.

They will not realize right away

The leading role they are asked to play.

But with this child sent from above

Comes stronger faith, and richer love.

And soon they’ll know the privilege given

In caring for their gift from heaven.

Their precious charge, so meek and mild,

Is heaven’s very special child.”

–compliments of ‘Dear Abby’, 12/03/09

Coming soon…!

Based upon popular demand and frequent inquiries, WaterWayBabies is expanding into “waterwaykids” by offering a larger neck ring. The inside circumference is a tad larger than 14 inches around. So, if you’ve been wanting to order one for your older child…or you can see that your toddler is soon to outgrow his/her present neck ring, please email Nancy at nancy@waterwaybabies.com to pre-order. Price is yet to be determined, but hopefully will stay the same or close to the same as the other two neck rings presently offered at $35. The new neck rings should be available to ship in about 2 weeks. In time for Christmas!

Happy swimming!

Busy moms & dads

Today’s mom often works outside the home, sometimes has more than one child, making it difficult to set aside a special time for their infants. But the WaterWayBabies System blocks out 30-45 minutes when the two of you can do something together.

Can’t be beat!! Happy swimming. :)