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OTS 121: Choose Wisely: Linking Motor Reflex Integration to Occupation

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Welcome to the show notes for Episode 121 of the OT Schoolhouse Podcast.

Do you ever wonder how much our early reflexes impact our physical, cognitive, and emotional development? What about the importance of reflex integration and rhythmic movements in shaping these abilities?

In this episode, Sonia Story sheds light on these intriguing connections and explains why reflex integration is critical for a child's growth and development.

Get ready to rethink the role of reflexes and discover the fascinating world of neurological soft signs and sensory integration.

Listen now to learn the following objectives:

  • Learners will identify neurological soft signs and what happens when they are inhibited

  • Learners will identify how sensory integration and retained reflexes are connected

  • Learners will identify why reflex integration is such a fundamental foundational system of movements

Guest(s) Bio

Sonia Story earned a Bachelor of Science degree with a combined major in biology and psychology. She studied two bodywork systems—Orthobionomy and Hanna Somatics—which influenced her later application of neurodevelopmental movement tools.

Sonia extensively studied innate neurodevelopmental movements with Harald Blomberg, MD; Moira Dempsey; Svetlana Masgutova; Mary Kawar, OT; and other instructors.

While earning certifications to teach Rhythmic Movement Training (RMTi) and other movement courses, Sonia maintained a private practice effectively using these tools—first to overcome her own challenges with sensory issues and anxiety—then for helping individuals of all ages.

The majority of Sonia’s clients are school-age children. Sonia Story taught the RMTi curriculum for 10 years and has been teaching the Brain and Sensory Foundations curriculum since 2008.


“The more you know about the stimulus and the motor response, the more you can see that reflexes could be hindering functional skills” -Sonia Story

“Reflex integration as a modality is basically trying to boost, innate development through, using the patterns and the ways that nature itself has designed human beings to develop” - Sonia Story

“There are very compelling studies showing that, when we give the tools for reflex integration, we boost function and occupational functions” Sonia Story

“It's also about going through the scientific steps to see if what we are doing is working with our clients. And… at the end of the plan, we are able to say, this created occupational outcomes, then we have created data for our program” Jayson Davies, M.A., OTR/L

“There is a sensory component that is stimulating the reflex” Jayson Davies, M.A., OTR/L

Resources (Affiliate links)

Be sure to subscribe to the OT Schoolhouse email list & get access to our free downloads of Gray-Space paper and the Occupational Profile for school-based OTs. Subscribe now!

Thanks for visiting the podcast show notes! If you enjoyed this episode, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts


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