THEY have a simple aim … to celebrate their children’s achievements.
And there was every reason to do so in Slaithwaite, as the youngsters took on the challenge of learning Iyengar Yoga.
It was just the latest attempt by the Huddersfield’s Down Syndrome Support Group (HDSSG) to highlight just how rewarding it can be to work with families.
They had gathered at Slaithwaite’s Watershed – a converted weaving shed used to host creative workshops – to take part in the sessions. Designed to help strengthen the muscles of children with Down Syndrome and aid with hypotonia, the yoga morning also proved to be very sociable.
More than 10 families took part in the relaxing 45-minute Iyengar session led by instructor Jayny Stock.
This form of yoga is often used in physical therapy as it helps target unsupple or injured areas.
Leanne Davies, communications officer for HDSSG, joined the group after giving birth to her son Jack in 2006, and said that popularity in the group has grown.
She said: “We have got over 40 families in Huddersfield and we do various events for different age groups.
“It was founded by parents of children with Down Syndrome in the area and we believe it is crucial to celebrate our children’s achievements, champion their views and aspirations, challenge out-dated thinking and spread current accurate information about Down Syndrome.
“The group has been running for several years but we recently decided to kick it up a notch and make it more visible for families in the area.
“As a result we have welcomed four new babies in the last 12 months in Huddersfield alone.”
“It can be quite scary at first, but by talking to other parents it helps you know that everything is going to be okay and in fact it is the start of something wonderful.”
Older members of the group were busy taking part in a swimming competition for Kirklees Disability Team in Beverley while the younger ones enjoyed the yoga.
HDSSG have a calendar of events for the next few weeks including World Down Syndrome Day on March 21, which has been recognised for the first time by the United Nations.
The day was originally started in 2005 and it recognises the uniqueness of the triplication of chromosome 21 which causes the genetic condition Down Syndrome.
The aim of the day is to raise awareness and understanding of a condition which affects approximately 1 in 800 births worldwide.
Every day in the UK between one and two babies are born with the condition.
On March 24, the group will join the Wakefield and District Down Syndrome Support Group in a family fun day at Nostell Priory.
There will be dance displays, fairground games, inflatable football and musical entertainment from Slaithwaite’s Shabang group.
Read More http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/local-west-yorkshire-news/2012/03/05/kids-from-huddersfield-down-syndrome-support-group-flex-their-muscles-in-special-family-yoga-sessions-gallery-86081-30460050/2/#ixzz1oF9EmrnV