Crash Zone

by beagooddad on July 29, 2009

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Pookie has a bit of a habit of running full speed down a hallway and crashing into a wall with both hands raised in front of him. He’s been doing it off and on (mostly on) for a couple years. It normally last about 15 minutes or so. He loves it and there really is no way to tell him to stop it. He’s not really worried about breaking his wrists apparently.

I’ve been reading another book about autism called Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew.

We’ve always thought that Pookie was a bit hypersensitive because he definitely gets overwhelmed by noise situations that most kids would barely notice. We responded to that by letting him wear the noise reducing headphones when he wants them.

In general we treat Pookie as a kid with a little bit of hypersensitivity to noise and touch. But last night I was reading a section in the book about hyposensitivity (the opposite of hypersensitivity). That’s a fascinating thing. Hyposensitive kids often crave stronger impacts so that they can get enough physical contact. They often are very into things like swinging, spinning, falling, and crashing into stuff.

That’s Pookie in a nut shell.

I’m not sure if he enjoys those things because he’s a 6 year old boy that just likes to do those kinds of fun physical things or if he enjoys them because he really needs more of that kind of impact.

If Pookie were just crashing into the walls, I could (nervously – because of the risk of broken wrists) live with that but recently he’s been crashing into the windows. That’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax.

BAGM and I talked about trying to find a way to set up a Crash Zone in the house. I’m not really sure what that means right now but I want a spot where when he wants and/or needs to crash into stuff we can send him to a safe place where he can have fun with it.

I need to do a little research to see if there are known methods of handling this particular whatever it is but my first thought is to get one of those 2″ thick gym mats and hang them on the basement wall kind of like they do at the ends of basketball courts but those things cost a fair amount of money. If you have any ideas, or if you happen to have an old 2″ thick gym mat hanging around the house waiting for a trip to Good Will, let me know.

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