M.A. Movement and Arts Therapist, Lesley College. B.Ed. in Special Education and Movement. Graduate of the Psychotherapy Track of the Tel Aviv University School of Medicine. Lecturer and instructor of students in the therapist training track at the Seminar Hakibbutzim Teachers College. Clinic instructor and moderator of professional workshops for therapists in academic institutions and in therapist training tracks at the clinic. Provides individual treatments, parental instruction, counseling and guidance for the staff of therapists. Yoga therapist and moderator of yoga therapy lessons in small groups at the clinic.
Dr. Gill Solberg
Clinic director, diagnostician, therapist.
Developed the integrative approach to adapted movement therapy for posture disorders and motor difficulties. Continues to study, conduct research and create effective professional tools to improve movement patterns, both normative and pathological.
Physiotherapist, Pilates instructor, certified instructor for gym activity, and provides adapted movement therapy for seniors.
A physical therapist at "Loewenstein Rehabilitation Center," Therapist of postural disorders and musculoskeletal dysfunction in a private clinic, certified fitness trainer, has extensive experience in guiding physical activities specifically adapted to populations facing difficulties and limitations within the movement system. M.Sc.PT student.
Considering that the possible causes of motor limitations or postural disorders are many, the clinic has developed a unique integrative approach (which is taught today as part of a year-long course for therapists, and also in training programs in Israel and the world).
Each treatment given in the clinic is based on a comprehensive and in-depth diagnostic process which is intended not only to locate the problem itself, but also to identify the source of the person's difficulty. In this way, a therapeutic process can be tailored to deal with the source of the specific difficulty, be it structural (changes in the skeletal system), functional (lack of balance in the muscular system), motor (difficulties in control processes because of neurological problems) or (as in most cases) multifactorial, combining several factors.
What is the integrative approach that is used in the clinic?
A significant part of movement and postural problems experienced by the population at large may stem from motor control problems. The integrative approach is based on the assumption that motor control, which includes the fundamentals such as posture, timing, kinesthetic sense, coordination, isolation of movement, etc. – constitutes the basis for normative posture patterns as well.
Effective treatment of postural problems goes far beyond exercises that activate one muscle or another. The clinic staff, with its extensive academic and clinical training, integrates the neurodevelopmental approach in their treatments. Implementation of its principles helps to correct movement effectively and to create in the exerciser a significant and lasting change in the faulty movement patterns that have become embedded in the patient's nervous system.
Stages of treatment at the clinic:
Postural and/or motor diagnosis according to the nature of the problem*
Data processing, analysis of diagnostic findings, delineation of aims, and preparation of a detailed diagnostic report
Commencement of treatment (the actual activity format is determined by the essence of the problem)
* The entire process is closely monitored as is progress in treatment. This includes periodic tests and when necessary videos of the patient.
What does a diagnostic meeting include?
Diagnosis and evaluation are the first milestones of any treatment program. The emphasis in the clinic's approach is integrative, which means being attentive to all the components and characteristics in the patient's personality and abilities – physically, cognitively and emotionally. This model was developed to facilitate a view that is integrative but also focused and accurate, so that a therapeutic program can be built that is both personally tailored and effective.
Conversation to obtain preliminary information
Posture diagnosis (anthropometric measurements, muscle testing and functional evaluation)
Evaluation of previous tests, examination of medical opinions, X-rays and other information
The motor functioning evaluation is one of the bases for preparing an adapted exercise program. A person's posture pattern is closely linked to his motor functioning and control. Characteristic limitations experienced by individuals with posture disorders such as muscle weakness, heightened muscle tone, limited range of movement or functional asymmetry as a result of faulty positioning of one joint or another – all of these affect other functions such as balance, coordination, movement accuracy, kinesthetic ability, regulation of strength etc. On the other hand, the relationship may be reversed – difficulties in motor functioning prevent the maintenance of balance and posture patterns. At times, neurological factors may be involved (sensory or motor paths that affect information processing and motor control). All of these aspects are examined in the diagnostic procedure.
What does individual treatment in the clinic include?
The integrative approach to treatment of posture problems is based on two important components:
Building an adapted movement framework (ranges of movement, strength)
The basic assumption here is that a balanced postural stance of the entire body depends on the specific functional balance of each of its parts. Functional weakness of certain muscles or functional limitations in the flexibility of other muscles will create local imbalances in a joint connected to them – and indirectly cause a negative chain reaction that affects "neighboring" joints as well. Therefore, this component of treatment is based mainly on specific exercises intended to make muscles stronger and more flexible – an essential basis for improving posture patterns.
2. Building a motor basis (motor control)
At times we tend to forget that the "little box" between our ears is what controls everything. A significant part of posture problems in the population does not stem from one muscle or another but rather from problems connected to motor control, coordination difficulties, kinesthetic disorders, faulty regulation of strength, and a variety of other parameters connected to the quality and accuracy of orders given by the brain to various body limbs.
A common example of this is the difficulties people have in maintaining stability and balance in the pelvic area. For many people, raising an arm, putting on a shirt or tying a shoelace creates back pressure because of faulty control of a number of muscles that are supposed to stabilize the pelvis and spine. Thus faulty functioning is created in the entire movement chain connected to the supposedly simple task. This is similar to a car whose systems are all working well but the driver is unskilled at operating them.
Building a motor infrastructure does not mean treating specific systems of the "human car" but rather improving the "driver's skills." In this area it is necessary to "delete old motor programs from the brain" (meaning faulty movement patterns) and building new synaptic memories based on new movement patterns.
This is the most difficult, complex and challenging part of treating posture. If movement trainers and instructors focus only on components connected to movement (that is, treating the car systems and ignoring driver quality) they cannot understand why removing the local physical limitation in a given joint does not change the overall postural picture (for example – the back muscles are already 'strong'….but the person still stands bent over). The abdominal muscles are already strong but the lower vertebrae still arch too high. In most cases, treatment based on 'strength or flexibility exercises' only – yields poor results over time.
Movement experiences of various types must be used to work on altering movement habits and raising physical awareness. Without doing so, a person will not change the movement patterns embedded in his nervous system, and will return to the faulty movement patterns. Here, the therapist's skills are very important for building a gradual "correction process" that builds up the exerciser's confidence by providing many opportunities for success.
Who is on the clinic staff?
The members of the clinic staff are professionals of the first rank who above all feel a deep commitment to movement: they love movement and they understand movement.
Maslow said that if the only tool a person has is a hammer – he will tend to treat the whole world as if it is a nail. The professional approach practiced in the clinic requires each staff member to have mastered a diversified toolbox based on in-depth studies of all aspects affecting human movement, whether normative or pathological.