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Efficacy of Therapeutic Recreation-Based Drumtastic® and Kid Yoga Rocks in an Early Childhood Public School Setting

Lyn Gorbett Litchke, Trason Willemin, Allison Willemin, Carrie Ekins, Dean P. Owens


The intent of this study was to compare drumming and yoga to regular classroom physical activity in a school setting. Twenty-nine early childhood students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) engaged in 5-weeks of TR led Kid Yoga Rocks (KYR; n = 10), Drumtastic ® (DR; n = 11), or Classroom/recess control group (CR; n = 8). Statistical analysis revealed significant positive changes pre-post in cognition (p < .001) and mood/fun (p =.003) within DR and KYR groups. Significant positive affect change resulted in DR and KYR vs. CR (p < .001); though no difference between DR and KYR. No significant change in socialization with others pre-post for all three groups. However, near significant between groups change for personal relationships for KYR and DR vs. CR which showed DR significantly better (p = .023). Thus, TR led evidence-based practice in schools as a related service can benefit children with ASD including problem solving, memory, relationship building, and expression of positive emotion. Implications for TR practice in school settings and further research on the effects of yoga and drumming are warrented as a result of this study. 

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Autism spectrum disorder; drumming; recreational therapy; schools; yoga

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