What is Ayres’ Sensory Integration Therapy?

A lovely explaination of Ayers’ Sensory Integration Therapy and the new fidelity measure

Sensory Project


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What is Praxis, and why is it important?

Praxis, the ability to plan, organise and perform a new motor activity

Sensory Project

“Praxis is … the ability by which we figure out how to use our hands and body in skilled tasks like playing with toys; using tools, including a pencil or fork; building a structure, whether a toy block-tower or a house; straightening up a room, or engaging in many occupations.”
A Jean Ayres 1985

To have adequate praxis, we must detect and register sensory input from within our bodies and from the world around us. Then we integrate this incoming sensory information, to make sense of what is happening. We interpret these sensations using our past experiences and learning. This means we are able to move about easily, doing and trying new things. When this happens well, we can interact with the world and with the people around us.Screen Shot 2017-08-30 at 15.37.10

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Through The Senses

Lovely explaination if what Sensory Integration means…

Sensory Project

screen-shot-2016-12-11-at-17-16-04Sensory Integration is a model that helps us to better understand how the mind, body, and brain connect in children, teens and adults

International research increasingly supports the view held by many therapists that sensory integration difficulties underpin unusual or problem behaviours.

Everyone has their own unique sensory preferences. Our “Through the Senses” courses can help parents, carers and teachers and adults swith sensory integration challenges discover what their own unique sensory profiles and sensory preferences are.

When we discover what our own unique sensory profiles and sensory preferences are we are better able to understand ourselves or be ‘sensory detectives’ for those we look after and support. When we are able to understand someone’s behaviours in terms of sensory integration theory; we are able to feel comfortable advocating about what helps them, how to creatively meet their sensory needs and explore practical ways to do this anywhere.

When we are…

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ESIC 2017 Workshop : Ayres’ Sensory Integration beyond Childhood

Ayres’s Sensory Integration is not just for children, have a look at this post from Sensoryproject1 to find out more

Sensory Project

IMG_1961.JPGAyres’ Sensory Integration (ASI) is increasingly being used with older adolescents(16+), adult and older adult clients. However adult specific research about the effectiveness of Ayres’ Sensory Integration Therapy (ASIT) with this age group is limited. Single-subject experimental designs (SSEDs) may provide clinicians working with small and varied case loads with a means to demonstrate if ASI is effective in improving participation in every day life. Meta-analysis of SSEDs is recognized as a possible means to support the development and implementation of evidence-based practice. 

Our workshop described the application of ASI with adults, describing acceptable, age appropriate assessment and intervention approaches and treatment spaces that meet Ayres’ SI Fidelity. Through the use of case study, the workshop explored assessment and intervention methods and outcome measurement tools currently used with adult clients receiving ASIT.

The use of the Quality of Life Inventory, tools from the Model of Human Occupation, Goal Attainment Scaling…

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Beyond the Five Senses: Input Vestibular

OT Mom Says

Dr. Dad says, “I’ll rock the baby tonight.”

OT Mom says, “Well then, good night to the both of you.”

Like many parents, he often falls asleep while rocking her, but why? Not only are our babies warm and snuggly, (and most of us are usually at least a little short on sleep), there’s more going on. It’s the rocking. The slow, linear movement of rocking has a direct calming effect on both of them, thanks to their vestibular systems.


Many of us are familiar with the five senses we learned about as kids, but there are several additional senses that have a ton of impact on just about everything we do. In a post a couple weeks ago, I provided some information about the proprioceptive system. Another super important system (that works very closely with the proprioceptive system) is the vestibular system.

So what is the vestibular sense? It’s…

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The COT petition update

It has been almost a year since COT originally produced and published their SI practice briefing paper, this was done without consultation with Sensory Integration Network even though the majority of SI networks staff and volunteers are COT members.

Over this time is has become clear the detrimental impact that the practice briefing is having on the provision of SI therapy in the UK, and I have personally come across many examples of both therapists and parents who have been unable to access funding for therapy and training as a direct result of this briefing. I am looking to build a data base of evidence and I would like both families and parents to let us know their stories. This can be done by e-mailing me at cotpetition@gmail.com
A small group of parents had a very pleasant meeting with 2 members of staff from COT in July of last year. The people we met with listened to us and promised us that new guidelines for parents and commissioners would be published, and also that the practice briefing would become a “working document” which they would be open to editing. Unfortunately these promises have not been kept. Although I met personally with Julia Scott at the OT show in November, I have since had no communication whatsoever from COT.

I still feel that this document published by College of Occupational Therapists will make accessing Sensory Integration therapy for our children even more difficult than it already is. Because of this i have decided that it is time to revive the petition.


Please sign and share this link.

This document should never have been published publicly, practice breifings are usually published only for members. however against their own policies and usual practice this document was placed in the public domain. Since the petition was started the document was withdrawn from the public section of the website, however no formal retraction or apology has ever been made.

There are many other problems with the document,

The briefing appears to be trying to discredit the use of SI as an approach to helping our children; it tries to say in a few places that there is a lack of evidence to support SI. The problem is that they have left out any references to newer research which clearly supports the use of SI and shows that it does work.

The briefing says that SPD is not included in the DSM-V, this is the book which doctors use to find the criteria for diagnosing conditions such as ASD or ADHD. Because SPD’s not listed in the DSM-V book doctors can’t yet make a diagnosis of SPD and there are no NICE guidelines saying what the NHS has to provide. But the briefing leaves out other important points, it doesn’t make clear that there were some important changes put into the DSM-V about sensory processing, such as sensory difficulties now being included when doctors diagnose ASD.

The briefing advises OT’s to use their knowledge of sensory processing difficulties to advise families to make environments such as bedrooms and classrooms more sensory friendly instead of actually using sensory integration therapy.

So for example a child with oversensitivity to noise, may be advised to be in a quieter environment or use ear defenders, rather than receive SI therapy which would help their body to rewire their sensory systems to be able to cope with noisy environments better forever. As a parent I know which I intervention I would prefer for my child.

Why does this affect families?

As parents we want the best therapies for our children. In the UK it is incredibly difficult for the majority of families to access SI therapy this is because commissioners (the people who pay for the NHS services we get) are not investing time and money in training or employing the therapists who can help our children and young people through Sensory integration therapy. Our children and young people will live with the consequences of this lack of investment for the rest of their lives.

Commissioners have a tough job, the have to decide how they will spend the money that they have on services to help children and families living with conditions such as ASD / ADHD and SPD. There is lots of competition for what the funding can be spent on, and the commissioners have to be careful because they will have to answer for the decisions that they make.

Commissioners have to follow rules and get advice about where they are going to invest what little money they have. As well as taking note of demand from families they also have to look to professional bodies such as COT for advice and guidance when deciding how much if any money will be spent on SI training and therapy for children in the areas where we live.

This briefing affects all of our families because we want access to SI therapy for our children, we want there to be trained OT’s all over the country so that children can have access to SI when they are as young as possible. To bring about the changes we need to make this happen we have to have the support of the professional bodies like COT so that when commissioners look for professional advice and guidance that they see that SI is something worth investing in.


More information can be found on the SI network’s webpage


Once again, Thank you so much for supporting this petition. It is so important to me that Sensory Integration Therapy be widely available to help as many children as possible, and I want you to know how much I appreciate your support in this matter.




Exciting Information about ESIC 2015 – European Sensory Integration Congress, Birmingham

I’m really excited that next week I will be attending this congress in Birmingham. I really hope some of you will be there for me to meet you.

I am blessed that I have had lots of support in being able to get there in person. From help with the kids, house and business, to encouragement, support and financial assistance from the people I work and volunteer for.

I just wanted to let you know that if you cant actually attend for whatever reason that there is a way that you can still participate and hear the speakers. I don’t normally share this stuff or advertise on behalf of others but I know that this is something that I would want to know about, and thats why I am sharing it here in my personal space.

I am especially excited that it is totally affordable and so accessible to way more people.


So for only £29.99 you can register online and view the keynote speeches and presentations from the Great Hall taking place on Friday and Saturday’s Scientific Programme via the live webcast (more information below).

This is awesome, because you can do this from anywhere in the whole world, without having to travel, or find child care or get loads of time off work. I am sharing this because I am passionate about SI, and I want as many people as possible to be able to have access to the information we have had.

I hope you can join us,

Sarah x


We are really excited to let you know that the keynote speeches and presentations in the Great Hall at ESIC 2015, taking place on 11 and 12 September, will be streamed live for the two days. This fantastic addition to the Congress gives all our colleagues across the globe the opportunity to be a part of ESIC from the comfort of their own chair.

Keynote speeches include experts Dr. Zoe Mailloux, Prof Roseann Schaaf, Dr Diane Parham, Dr Tina Champagne, Professor Batya Engel-Yeger, Dr Susanne Smith Roley and Éadaoin Bhreathnach.

For just £29.99 you can register online and view the keynote speeches and presentations from the Great Hall taking place on Friday and Saturday’s Scientific Programme via the live webcast.

  • As part of your experience you will have online access to all the presentations and posters being exhibited over the duration of the two days.
  • As a member of our virtual audience, you will also have access to our delegate only social media, ESIC2015 group via Facebook. The social media team will be on hand, so that some questions from our virtual audiences can be included in any questions posed to the speakers.

Register your place now using the “Add to Bag” button above and be a part of Sensory Integration of the future. We hope you can join us!

ESIC 2015 Live Webcast Programme


09:15 – 9:30   Welcome
Rosalind Rogers, Chair of SI Network

09:35 – 10:05   The Power of Vision (and ALL the senses!): Looking Toward the Future for Ayres Sensory Integration.
Dr Zoe Mailloux

10:10 – 10:40   Evidence for Ayres Sensory Integration.
Professor Roseann C. Schaaf

10:45 – 11:15   Sensory Integration Intervention a Neurosequential Approach to Development Trauma
Éadaoin Bhreathnach

11:15 – 11:45   Break

11:45 – 12:15   Sensory processing and performance of adults in the workplace.
Annamarie Lombard

12:20 – 12:40   Participation challenges in Children with ASD and Somatodyspraxia.
Susanne Smith Roley

12:45 – 13:15   Proprioceptive Processing Patterns in Children with Autism and their contribution to Praxis and Participation-Preliminary results.
Elisabeth Soechting

13:15 – 14:00   Lunch

14:00 – 14:30   Ayres Sensory Integration and the experiences of a child with cochlear implants and sensory over-responsiveness.
Stefanie Kruger

14:35 – 15:05   Integrating Ayres Sensory Integration and DIRFloortime in the intervention with children with autism spectrum disorders.
Judith Abelenda

15:10 – 15:35   Applying Ayres Sensory Integration in Psychology.
Lourdes Guzman and Adriana del Carmen Castillo Sánchez Lara

15:35 – 16:15   Break

16:15 – 16:45   The ASI 2020 Vision & Mental Health Applications.
Tina Champagne

16:45   Close


09:00 – 9:30   Sensory Processing Disorders– The Bridge between Underlying Neurophysiological Mechanisms and Daily Life.
Professor Batya Engel-Yeger

09:35 – 10:05   The Meaning and Implication of Sensory Experiences for Participation: The Voice of People with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Eynat Gal

10:10 – 10:40   A Vision for Assessment in Ayres Sensory Integration.
Diane Parham

10:45 – 11:15   Toward Best Practice: Education in Ayres Sensory Integration ®
Susanne Smith Roley

11:15 – 11:45   Break

11:45 – 12:15   The effectiveness of various strategies based on Ayres SI model in intervention to children with SI Disorders.
Svetlana Kashirina

12:20 – 13:10   Community Occupational Therapy for Learning Disabilities, the process of providing Ayres Sensory Integration Therapy and approaches to this population.
Rachael Daniels andPam O’Hara

13:10 – 14:15   Lunch

14:15 – 15:00   “Is it Sensory or is it Attachment?” A case report of Ayres Sensory Integration Intervention with an adult male with Asperger’s Syndrome.
Ros Urwin and andÉadaoin Bhreathnach

15:00 – 15:45   Evidence for the effectiveness of occupational therapy using Ayres’ Sensory Integration approach as confirmed through the ASI Fidelity Measure.
Elisabeth Soechting

15:45 – 16:15   Break

16:15 – 16:45   The realities of SI assessment and intervention in third world settings
Annamarie Van Jaarsveld

16:45 -17:00   Closing Speech