By Michelle Singh

    In May I had the distinct pleasure of visiting Ring Around the Spectrum, a sensory gym, located within the Berkshire Bank Plaza and across the parking lot from Wildwood’s Latham location. One of the individuals I support in counseling was with me for a session that day, and I asked him if he would be interested in seeing the gym; he readily agreed.

    We walked to the gym at around 1:00. At that time, we were the only people inside the gym, with the exception of the four staff. There had been a busload of kids at the gym earlier in the day, but when we arrived it was peacefully quiet. Lorraine, the director, gave us a tour of the facility, pausing to let us know what the purpose was for each piece of equipment or room. The gym is full of colors, swings, slides and a rock-climbing wall. It is void of music, lighting is dimmed and there is a quiet, sensory room.

    Ring Around the Spectrum is designed to assist with the development and improvement in the following areas: balance, body awareness, fine motor coordination, cause-and-effect reasoning, cognitive-behavioral social skills, independence in an appropriate and safe setting and communication and attention.  

    The gym is available to people of all ages, and they currently serve individuals from a few months to 76 years of age. Even though the gym is designed for those with autism and other developmental delays, everybody is welcome and encouraged to use the facility - even if you don’t have a diagnosed disability. All of the equipment was selected by occupational therapists, which means there is a purpose behind the fun!

    For more information, please contact Ring Around the Spectrum directly at 518.250.5328.

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