Interactive Metronome (IM) is a program specifically designed for assessing and training neurological processes of motor planning and sequencing. Motor planning and sequencing are central to many of our daily activities, from walking, talking, to higher functions such as reasoning and problem solving.
Due to neurological disorders or acquired injuries to the brain, a child can face tremendous challenges learning or re-learning these vital skills, and may exhibit great difficulty succeeding in tasks that seem easily acquired by their peers.Fortunately, in a developing child or in a full-grown adult, the brain continues to have abilities to learn from its environment, and is able to repair and remodel the way it works through responding and adopting appropriately to meaningful experiences. This phenomena is commonly known as the brain’s neuroplasticity. Interactive Metronome (IM) is a therapy tool based on this unique property of the human brain. IMtrains a child to improve his or her brain’s ability to motor plan and sequence by using neuro-sensory and neuro-motor exercises.
IM works by augmenting internal processing speed within the brain. The key regions of the brain involved appear to include the cerebellum, prefrontal cortex, cingulate gyrus and basal ganglia. These parts of the brain are responsible for timing as well as many day to day functions such as: sustained attention, language formulation, motor coordination and balance.
The IM program provides a structured, goal-oriented process that challenges the child to synchronize a range of hand and foot exercises to a precise computer-generated reference tone heard. The child is then trained to match the rhythmic beat with repetitive motor actions according to the beat frequency identified as most suitable after the initial evaluation. A patented auditory-visual guidance system with the use of a computer provides immediate feedback measured in milliseconds with a score, and also records the child’s responses for each exercise in every session. This allows performance comparison over sessions and documents progress.
For younger children (under 6 years old), the “exercises” are often adopted or custom-designed to match the individual child’s ability or interest and can be incorporated in a play activity, or simply played in the background for exposure. There was also experimental use of IM beats in a controlled way to assist premature babies learning the rhythm of sucking.
Over the course of the treatment, the child will learn to:
Focus and attend for longer periods of time
Increase physical endurance and stamina
Filter out internal and external distractions
Improve ability to monitor mental and physical actions as they are occurring
Progressively improve coordinated performance.
Children who will benefit include:
Sensory Integration Disorder
ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactive Disorders or ADD (Attention Deficit Disorders)
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD)
Cerebral Vascular Accident (CVA)/Stroke
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
2014 New Jersey Pediatric Feeding Associates & Therapy Center, 150C Tices Lane, East Brunswick, NJ 08816. (732)698-1100