Monday, September 13, 2010

Going Four for Four with Under Armour

Kai had another good day at school on Friday. That makes it four good days out of the four days that he has worn an Under Armour shirt.

Our new OT, Becca, had suggested that we look into therapeutic compression shirts for our son. Many kids with autism have sensory issues and desire deep pressure. Kai is no different, as he often seeks out squeezes to his head or body. The idea of having Kai wear compression shirts is that they would fit snugly against his body, giving a squeezing sensation that simulates the feeling of the hugs that he craves. Becca thought that it might help him stay regulated, particularly in school.

We looked into it, but the special shirts we initially found online were much more expensive than we wanted to pay. Plus, they seemed kind of ugly, ensuring that Kai would stand out for wearing therapeutic-looking shirts.

Then, I found a comment that said that Under Armour shirts provide the same effect that we were looking for. For those of you who may not be familiar, Under Armour is the maker of tight-fitting sports shirts that are popular with teens and young adults these days. These shirts are typically worn to help regulate body temperature and dryness during athletic activity. They are made of a lycra-type fabric that fits snug on the body and feels silky.

The advantages for us are that Under Armour apparel is readily available and priced much more reasonably than the special shirts we saw. We also thought that they were more stylishly attractive than the therapeutic-looking shirts.

So, after Kai had one mediocre and two bad days to start the school year, my wife got a couple of Under Armour shirts to try out. On his first day of wearing one, Kai had a great day at school. The next day, he did not wear an Under Armour shirt and he reverted to having a so-so day.

This past week, due to the Labor Day and Rosh Hashanah holidays, he had school on only three days, and he wore his Under Armour on all three days. He put together three really good days, capped off by his best day of the year so far on Friday. He had no major incidents all week, stayed safe every day, and seemed calmer and happier overall.

We really don’t know for sure how much the Under Armour shirts are responsible for the great week he had. It is possible that he would have done well anyway. And, I am certainly not expecting that all of his behavior issues have been resolved forever with $20 pieces of clothing.

But, it’s tough to argue with a four out of four batting average. Like a superstitious baseball player, I don’t think we’ll be changing his clothing until he goes into a prolonged slump.

This is the type of shirt we got: Boy's Shortsleeve Heatgear® T ll Tops by Under Armour

1 comment:

  1. I approve of the sports references.

    Under Armor is pretty snazzy...


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