Massage Therapy and Sensory Integration Service

The service aims to provide a relaxing experience for children and young people in settings across Reading, support for parents and advice to professionals. Sessions are tailored to each child’s individual needs and all therapy sessions are delivered on a one to one basis.

The service offers training to staff and parents in school on use of massage techniques and supporting sensory needs in school and at home. This service is purchased directly by schools, and referrals are usually made by their Special Educational Needs/Inclusion Co-ordinators.

The children and young people referred to the service typically have diagnoses of an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and/or Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) difficulties. They may also experience physical disabilities, developmental delay, difficulties coping with bereavement, anxiety or behaviour and/or other special educational needs.

Sessions usually start with an exercise which may help the child with their spatial awareness, fine motor skills, sequence and crossing the midline and they may help to improve hand-eye co-ordination and bilateral skills. The therapist may also assist the pupil in completing recommendations from other professional reports i.e. Occupational Therapy. The therapist and pupil may spend time talking about concerns or worries the pupil may be experiencing and the therapist may be able to offer support and advice.

Hand massage follows, which is a calming technique and reduces stress and anxiety. Hand massage can also support handwriting skills. Finally, there is an opportunity for a back and head massage. Parental and child consent is required, and it is carried out through clothing, using hands and massage tools.

As well as delivering massage therapy, the therapist will complete an independent sensory assessment and offer support and advise to school staff, parents/carers and other professionals around pupil’s sensory differences.

For more information please visit the Reading Education Services website or contact Sophie Webster on 07814622986 or