The ABR’eal Truth

Since Nathan was little, we always played a game at the pool. I would pull him out to the edge of the pool, ask him to stand up, and when he stood, I would have him “jump” to the water. Today while we were at the pool I noticed something thoroughly depressing. He can no longer put both feet flat on the floor. His hippotherapist also told me on Friday that she is noticing mild scoliosis – he locks his left knee when he tries to stand, which makes his back tilt to the left. Recently I also noticed that he’s scissoring even when at rest, and that his foot is starting to look deformed. Basically, his body is starting to deteriorate and he’s starting to have a myriad of orthopedic problems. All the signs are there. I can ignore this no longer. It’s rapidly becoming an ISSUE.

My conclusion – it’s time to stop futzing around and time to get serious about ABR. I’ve talked about ABR in this blog. It’s one of my favorite therapies. But one that I have just never dedicated much time to.

Why? Because it’s so slow. Because it’s so subtle. Because I can’t SEE what’s going on. Because it’s very time consuming. Because it requires patience and that is my biggest deficit.

But lately I have come to understand many things. For example, the fact that ABR works by feeding energy to the cells. The fact that ABR bypasses the brain so, even with a damaged brain, it can help the child. I never thought I’d say that as I always wanted to do therapies that helped the brain. But now we are shifting gears and the fact that we CAN bypass the brain is a major benefit.

A couple of months ago I spoke with Leonid Bylum, the genius behind ABR, and he has been giving me more information on how and why ABR works. He even sent me a video specifically addressing the reasons for Nathan’s lack of head control from a structural point of view. So about 2 months ago we started the ABR challenge.

The ABR Challenge

I told Leonid that if he was so confident that his method could help Nathan gain control, why don’t we set up a “test”. He gave us a series of exercises to do, and a certain amount of time for each exercise. He said that after 50 hours of 4 specific exercises, Nathan should have better head control. So we started about 2 months ago, doing 1.5 hours on weekdays. We are now close to finishing our first exercise and 50 hours.

The verdict?

It works. ABR works. As subtle, as gentle at it is – it has a profound impact on the child’s body. We started with an exercise on the front of Nathan’s neck. I’ve noticed that he DOES have better anterior neck control – his head doesn’t flop forwards as much. We haven’t worked on the sides or back so he’s just as floppy in those directions. But the part that we’ve worked on – the front – is stronger, more defined, more controlled.

The Real Truth about ABR?

It works. I have long and hard resisted this truth. I didn’t want to have to spend 3 hours a day doing manual passive exercises on Nathan. I wanted ACTIVE exercise where I could SEE what is going on. But the reality is that Nathan’s structure is starting to suffer and unless we work on his structure, he will have to experience many painful surgical interventions.

All of the children that have been doing ABR that I have been following for the past 1.5 years have experienced structural, and functional, changes. All of them.

It’s time.

ABR is going to become a focus for us. An integral part of Nathan’s rehabilitation. Will it lead to functional changes? I hope so, but that is no longer my expectation for ABR. My goal is to help preserve Nathan’s structure to minimize painful surgical interventions. If Nathan also experiences functional changes, we will wholeheartedly welcome them.

So it’s official for me: ABR works, and is essential for Mr. Nathan. Time to buckle down and get to work.


  1. Es un maravillos análisis que te APLAUDO!!!. Es genial que hagas ABR a conciencia (quiero decir sabiendo que funciona, con FE). Te entiendo porque soy igual a lo que describes de trabajo que vea resusltados YA! y de ser muyyy desesperada. Pero, y a donde voy al final del camino si cuando ya haya logrado (como me ha ocurrido) una marcha, se viene abajo porque su estructura es pésima y no puede con lo que funcionalmente le ensñé. Con ABR en serio (2 horas como mínimo al dia) empezaras a ver lentos pero IMPRESCINDIBLES cambios que el necesita tanto que casi, te sentirás feliz haciendolo aunque parezca que solo lo acaricias y no pasa nada. Animos amiga. Es una buenísima desición!!!!

  2. It does takes time and patience! BUT IT WORKS!!! Christopher would never look as good as he does today if it was not for ABR! I am taking a break now because of his new diagnosis but will start up again soon!

  3. Me imagino que sabes lo contenta que me hace leer esto. Te felicito por tomarte el tiempo y la dedicación de probar y me alegra mucho que los resultados de hayan gustado.
    Más te gustará saber que ahora hay algunos ejercicios de ABR que son más activos y también de resultados relativamente más rápidos, así que esta oportunidad que le das a ABR será muy bien retribuida, estoy segura.

    Que dures mucho en esta postura! 😉

  4. Hi Marcela,

    I wish ABR would be a fast solution.
    I hope that your belief in ABR and seeing results on other people will help you to look forward to changes that would benefit Nathan too.

    Best wishes 🙂

    P.S. Could you please tell me L-Glutamin dose and how often do you give it to Nathan.

  5. Hi, just a small suggestion – google prayer request and then email your prayer requests for Nathan to as many sites as you can. The power of prayer is amazing. Lovely site – thank you for all this information.

  6. Well, I had noticed his improved head control, and wondered if you had begun working on him again. It does work, and yes, it sucks that it’s such a slow process, but every time I’ve buckled down on an area, I’ve seen functional improvements. Even this last time when we were at the doctor talking about Botox–one of his hamstrings had improved in the last six months, which is basicially unheard of. Yes, it works. I wish more people had access to it, but it can do wonders.

  7. thanks for this post. I need the motivation, we are totally committed to the theory of ABR but I’m not very good at making it a priority in all the other stuff we have going on, so… I’ll follow your lead and get to it right now!

  8. Really???

    I tried to leave a message – your mailbox is still full 🙂


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