Did you know that every moving part in our gym is made to encourage fun AND healthy development? Since CEO & Founder, Dina Kimmel, opened the first We Rock the Spectrum in Tarzana in 2010, our team has created a sensory-safe environment that also promotes inclusivity and enjoyment. Each piece of equipment has been chosen so that children with autism and special needs, as well as neurotypical children, can benefit. To show you just how much our gym ROCKS, we want to showcase how our equipment promotes positive growth.
Today we are going to focus on our famous Zip Line! This high-flying piece of equipment is a great way to get your thrill seekers adrenaline going! If the daredevil life is not for your little one, the Zip Line can go at a leisurely pace and provides a comfortable place to sit as they glide. There is a safe place to land at every point along the way, but the crash pit at the end is an inviting, plush point to land.
“The Zip Line is great for the children because it’s really good at building their upper body strength and helping them with their muscle endurance,” says Fiona Kelly, owner of We Rock the Spectrum – Studio City in Los Angeles, CA, of this popular piece of equipment.
At We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gyms, we encourage Play With A Purpose™. The Zip Line does just that by strengthening the sense of sight, touch, hearing, proprioception, and the vestibular sense. A whopping 5 out of the 7 senses!
- The sense of sight is exercised by developing long-distance vision on the Zip Line, as the eyes are forced to focus quickly on different points as we zip by. This sharpens the vision and works the optic system.
- Several different apparatuses can be attached to the cable on the Zip Line, but most of our Zip Lines feature the comfy, drifter swing. Children must hold onto this swing to control their movement and make it to the other end. The sense of touch is exercised by feeling around the hanging swing to find the most comfortable and secure gripping point. This also helps us strengthen the upper body.
- Believe it or not, the sense of hearing benefits from the Zip Line as well! Similar to sight, our ears are forced to listen to our surroundings to determine how close we are to outside objects. Ultimately, this affects our body’s movement and helps us avoid obstacles.
- The sense of proprioception benefits greatly from the Zip Line. Proprioception is the term used to describe the ability to orient our bodies to our surroundings. It allows us to move quickly and safely without having to consciously think about where we are in our surroundings. Since the Zip Line is constant movement, the brain is taught to constantly adjust our proprioception.
- Lastly, our vestibular sense is heavily applied. With assistance from sight, hearing, and proprioception, the vestibular system helps us stay upright and balanced. Your placement on the drifter and your ability to stay on as you zip are all thanks to your vestibular system!
Kids don’t only get physical exercise on the Zip Line. They are also strengthening their mental and emotional brainpower. “It’s very good for their self-esteem because it builds confidence,” said Fiona Kelly. “They can challenge themselves. As you can see, for turn-taking, they’re learning to take their time and wait for their turn.”
The Zip Line undoubtedly stands out as one of the most popular items in our gyms. We love to see your kiddos grow and develop while also having a good time. Check out our video below to learn just how the Zip Line works and what our We Rockers have to say about it: