What administrators are saying:
I have known Mr.Oka and Ms. Gottlob for ten years and have admired their creative and groundbreaking work with children with serious emotional disturbances. Mr. Oka and Ms. Gottlob observed the children through a dancer’s eyes and saw much more than those of us traditionally trained in education and psychology. They demonstrated great patience and skill in de-escalating emotional intensity and restoring a level of emotional homeostasis in children. Our occupational therapists regularly observed MOVEMENT! sessions to expand their knowledge of interventions, and Mr.Oka and Ms. Gottlob organized training sessions with our teaching staff to enable them to integrate movement in the curriculum. It’s rare to meet people so driven by a passion for their field that they dedicate their lives to its advancement. – Dr. Frank Fecser, Executive Director of the Positive Education Program
They are warm and genuine, bright and hardworking, and showed creativity and initiative in developing and implementing an innovative curriculum with our students. They engaged children in spirited physical routines that filled each child with a greater sense of their physical self and awareness of the pure joy of physical movement…the challenge for the kids was inspiring and memorable – Todd R. Ray, School Coordinator for Phoenix Place Day Treatment Center
Stephanie and Yuji bring a wonderful synergy to their teaching. They clearly balance and challenge each other, bringing new curricular ideas and teaching methods into the field of special education. Both are dedicated, independent-minded, and highly competent individuals. Together, I believe they will make contributions that will truly make a difference for human beings. – Laurie Albright, School Coordinator, Early Intervention Center East
Stephanie and Yuji invited each person to participate without any preconceived expectations. They made sure that each person’s attempt was successful by adjusting the posture to their specific physical needs. The sessions were fast paced, interactive and lots of fun. It was clear to me by the way everyone participated that Stephanie and Yuji were exceptional teachers and that they provided a meaningful yoga program. I hope to be able to invite them again to join our group in the future and I would highly recommend them to others. Rebecca Paterson, Pegasus Community Project
What teachers are saying
You taught us so much. I did my first cartwheel in 40 years! We all enjoyed every movement class and the kids and I will miss you so much! – Ms. Janet
To the greatest movement teachers I have ever had the pleasure to work with. Please come back, soon, our children need you. –Ms. “Bev”
Thank you for working with our philosophies while teaching the children the beauty of your dance and the outcome of teamwork. – Ms. Marianne
My students look forward to MOVEMENT! classes. I see them trying new things that they would not do in regular gym classes. Stephanie and Yuji have done an amazing job working with my students in addressing their social skills, creativity, attention challenges, and emotional regulation. – Ms. Melanie
Every time I watch one of your classes I was in awe of your skills and talents and your special way of supporting the kids. You have helped these kids make very substantial gains that they never would have reached without you. –Ms. Chris
It was truly amazing to see how you integrated movement into a curriculum to teach children how to control their behavours through movement!! Your movement classes were a joy to watch. – Ms. April
You have made a tremendous difference in the lives of these children and helped their parents realize their children may be capable of things they never dreamed of. – Ms. Nora
What parents are saying
Sean, who is 4 years old, has improved a lot in the last 5 months. It is extremely easy for me to see the “before” and “after”. Sean focuses much more, has more awareness of his body and is able as well as eager to follow 4-step instructions . On top of that, he enjoys every minute of his private session. Stephanie is amazingly resourceful and knew how to engage Sean since the very first class. On the spot she creates little stories and games to keep him motivated. He loves pretend play, so Stephanie uses lots of it. After successfully completing a task, he gets a reward that he really likes such as drawing on the board, spinning , etc. For me, Stephanie’s years of experience on her field is what makes the difference. I could not be happier with Sean’s progress. This is my piece of advice to any parent who wants to see his/her child improve in his/her motor, social and play skills: reach out to Stephanie !
It is always a pleasure to watch you motivate the children with love and enthusiasm to do all of the different creative ideas you have chosen for them to do. Firm, kind, elegant and persistent, you are great role models! – Jeffrey & Ludmilla
We could never have predicted the progress you would make with Jack. You took a boy that refused to participate in any group activities and was not even capable of balancing on one foot, and you have helped him to actively become a member of the group. He skips everywhere he goes, raises his hand to volunteer, to go first. You have done amazing work with Jack. We appreciate you both very much. – Chris & Laura
My son Jaidan has intimate private lessons with Yuji & Stephanie after his regular movement class. He has a rare genetic condition and suffers from abnormal muscle tone. Through songs, gentle massage and tone building exercises designed just for him, he is walking better and is stronger than he was before. He hangs on their every word as he trusts that they are here to help him. He is non-verbal and loves this time with them. – Kelly
Thank you so much for working with Ethan. You taught him so much and built his confidence in himself. He loves both of you and was always excited about MOVEMENT! – Dake & Amber
I would like to say thank you very much. Sruthi and Sujay enjoyed your program, me and my husband too. We are going to miss you both so much. I can’t thank you enough for the services that you provided for my children. – Prathiba & Ramesh
Thanks a million! You guys have been so great for Christian. He loves you and we will all miss you. All the best! – Bruce
Thank you so much! You have helped my child follow directions, listen & focus, and improve social/cognitive skills. Betsy is taking the skills and generalizing them in other environments like her school and social skill groups. – Peter & Wilma
This is an excellent program and the staff was helpful and responded well to my child’s needs. Jimmy looked forwards to each session! – Frank & Stephanie
We are very pleased to have found such a wonderful, warm and caring environment for Marcus to practice yoga. Marcus is always eager to attend class. Yoga has had a positive influence on my son’s ability to calm himself. He is always in a peaceful mood after yoga class that persists for the entire evening. – Nadine L.
Daniel has truly enjoyed his experience with the yoga program. He is much calmer and is able to calm himself down better than ever. He has more awareness of himself. He remembers every single pose and can show them if asked. I think what Daniel enjoys the most is seeing all of his yoga “mates” every Sunday. – Susan K.
MOVEMENT!® is a key part of the “uncontrolled” experiment that is our son! Every class is different and challenging; making it engaging and unique to the individual. I have seen my son improve in his day to day gross motor skills and now he is able to sit more effectively during carpet time, because he has built up his core and upper body strength in Stephanie’s class. It’s like his very own personal trainer. – Charlene S., parent
My son, now 19, has been attending Adapted Yoga for almost two years. Although he is not always able to articulate such things, it is clear that he enjoys the program a great deal. We use the photographic record of the poses to praise him for his hard work and to see the improvements for ourselves. Perhaps the greatest change we have seen in him is the ability to stay calm and quiet for lengths of time, and in circumstances, where such behaviour would have been impossible before. – Laurie M.
The work that Steph and Yuji do is so unique, and such a great gift to children like Ella. I can’t think of anything like it offered in Toronto. I am incredibly grateful that they are able to bring their talent and skills into my daughter’s school – I would not have thought it possible, and I feel like I’ve won the lottery. – Colleen
Definitely some of the best money we've ever spent on this kid!-- "Movement therapy". Hard to describe, but basically it's like re-tracing developmental / foundational / core movements like crawling, and rolling, and building on that to increase the child's ability (and confidence) to "move" and be coordinated. The brain-body connection also proves that it helps him with sensory integration (big time), focus, being centred/ grounded, and learning. And I'm so proud of him!!! This stuff is not easy for him. It didn't come naturally. He works so hard. And now he gives a look like, "Yah, I got this." It can be exhausting, discouraging and overwhelming raising a child with 'special needs', and you have doubts as to whether the therapies you line up for your child will really make a difference. So finding a therapy that has an impact (and that they enjoy!) is like striking gold. We definitely struck gold with this one. —Susan
Amanda has a genetic syndrome and we have a doctors visit to a geneticists every 2 years. This doctor has followed Amanda since birth. We saw him the other day and he was just amazed at her gains. He was so surprised he brought in other doctors to see how Amanda has progressed. He was delighted at what I had done with her and all the work that I exposed her to. I have been taking Amanda here to the the Spiral Movement Center for almost 3 years. This work has helped Amanda walk, roll, crawl, explore, interact with me and just be more physically engaged with her environment. I feel without it Amanda would not be what she is today. The doctor said that it was wonderful to see Amanda's development because she is a person who is missing hundreds of genes and yet is still able to reach those developmental milestones and progress. —Ericka