Founder and Clinical Director:

Padra Smith, MS, OTR/L, SIPT

100 Reade Street

New York, NY 10013

917.960.0250

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 The TOMATIS® Method is an Educational Program, and is considered neither a medical treatment nor a means to establish a medical diagnosis.

The content in this website is for informational purposes only. It should be neither considered as nor substituted for medical advice.    

Tomatis is a registered trademark of Tomatis Developpement S.A.

 

Personal names throughout this site have been changed to protect the confidentiality of our clients. 

 

Mighty Minds and Muscles is a boutique therapy and coaching organization.

Our approach is thorough and progressive;

we are not just a pediatric occupational therapy clinic but a family learning center. 

We offer unique internationally-developed programs that help anyone with

developmental delays, learning difficulties and those who just feel disorganized or stressed. Our team is a small group of highly trained and educated co-therapists who continually strive to learn and develop holistic programs.

Whole child! Whole family!

Tomatis®  – A Listening Program

The Tomatis Method® is a revolutionary sensorineural auditory stimulation program that changes lives. It is an audio (music) program based on the 60-year old Tomatis Method that was developed by Dr. Alfred Tomatis and is used in more than 2,000 clinics and schools throughout the world.

 

Because 90% of all our sensory experiences include some component of our auditory system, it is vital for this system to function at its best. This auditory stimulation program retrains the ear for better listening through improved auditory processing. Its purpose is to improve the perception and analysis of the sensory message (sound) received by the body and brain. It is a complementary technique to therapy that enhances results by helping the client better integration the therapy or educational exercise they do under the advisement of a therapist.

  • Relationships: family, friends, work

 

  • Social interaction

 

  • Creativity

 

  • Illnesses that cause learning or functional challenges

 

  • Motivation, self-esteem and self- confidence

 

  • Positive view of life and joy in living

 

  • Calmness in pregnancy

 

  • Musicality

 

There are many benefits of the Tomatis Method such as potential improvement in:

 

 

  • Learning

 

  • Reading, comprehension, and writing

 

  • Sensory overload

 

  • Memory

 

  • Anxiety reduction and stress

 

  • Attention and ability to stay on task

 

  • Stroke recovery

 

  • Focus and follow through

 

  • Accidents, athletic injuries, concussions

 

  • Communication, speech

There are additional reasons to use the Tomatis Method as a strong support:

 

  • To learn another language

  • To accelerate learning

  • To prepare for a professional or entrance exam such as the Bar Exam, SATs, GMATS, or MCATs

 

The Tomatis Method is individualized for each listener—child or adult—and includes the use of patented technology to improve how you process, distinguish, and respond to sounds. These benefits often bring ease of living to those with traumatic brain injury or immune deficiency illnesses.

How is the auditory system stimulated? 

How We Help Children

Listening is the one foundational skill that impacts all of our other skills. It can be developed and improved at any stage of life. Tens of thousands of people annually around the world have used the Tomatis Method. Here are some needs and a sampling of those with whom we have worked.

 

Helps Children With:

 

  • Delayed speech and language

  • Auditory processing challenges

  • Attention deficit and hyperactive behavior

  • Sensory integration

  • Obsessive compulsive behavior

  • Tourette's Syndrome

  • Attention deficit and hyperactive behavior

  • Learning: dyslexia, apraxia, autism

  • Delayed reading and writing

 

In order to:

  • Struggle less with learning

  • Improve focus and stay on task           

  • Understand directions better

  • Reduce hours spent on homework

  • Access and improve speech

  • Improve relationships with friends

  • Unlock motivation and stimulate curiosity

  • Increase self-confidence and self-esteem

Our Programs

We offer:

  • Individual Listening Programs

  • Parent/Child Listening Programs

  • Sibling Listening Programs

  • Group In-clinic Listening Programs

  • School-based Listening Progams (For language acquistion, attention, or overall learning enhancement -whole class/group**.)

 

We work hard to get to know you and/or your child through our assessment and interview phase. Then we develop a program that will best support your needs. Each client is assigned an individualized program** that includes listening hours either at home, in our clinic or at your child's school. In order to benefit from the Tomatis Effect, each client/family must be committed to their program.

 

During one's listening intensive phase you or your child will listen to the Tomatis music using our equipment for up to 2 hours per day. Most programs consist of 3 Listening Intensive Phases (2 weeks long) over the course of approximately 5-6 months. *Programs vary.

 

SAMPLE INDIVIDUAL PROGRAM SCHEDULE:

Pre-Assessment phase

(1-3 sessions of observations, interviews or testing)

 

LISTENING Intensive Phase 1 (approx. 2 weeks)

 

Break (averaging 4-6 weeks)

 

LISTENING Intensive Phase 2 (approx. 2 weeks)

 

Break (4-12 weeks)

 

LISTENING Intensive Phase 3 (approx. 2 weeks)

 

Integration period (2-6 months)

 

Post-Assessment

 

*On-going assessments, observations, interviews and data tracking occurs throughout each phase/break.

 

Certain clients (i.e., young children and those with severe stress responses) will listening for less time per day or for more phases.

 

Some clients/families chose to continue their program beyond 3 phases for further development.

 

*Cost varies based on whether you complete listening phases at home or in our clinic and how long your program lasts.  

 

School-based programs can be applied to a whole class or group for enhancing general education, learning difficulties or foreign language acquistion. School-based programs can be funded by your school, PTA or grants. The school program has been successfully used in hundreds of schools in Europe and Mexico.  Help us bring the programs to your local school her in the US. 

 

CALL or EMAIL us for details based on your needs and interests. 

 

 

A New Understanding of the Ear

“One sings – or one speaks – with one’s ear.”

—Alfred A. Tomatis

 

The Conscious Ear: My Life of Transformation Through Listening

 

The Tomatis® Method is based on a new understanding of the ear, which draws a critical distinction between listening and hearing.

 

Listening Versus Hearing

 

Dr. Alfred Tomatis, the Method’s founder, emphasized that listening is different from hearing. Hearing is the passive reception of sound, while listening is the active participation in what one hears. It is possible to have good hearing, but poor listening. Dr. Tomatis found that by improving your listening, you can improve your day-to-day functioning in many areas.

 

Dr. Tomatis proved through scientific research that the voice can only produce what the ear can hear. If a sound is returned to the ear, it is immediately regained in the voice.--- And, if the ear is re-trained for a minimal amount of time (52 hours), the changes are long lasting. Tomatis built his Method around this proven premise, which was named the Tomatis Effect.

 

The ear plays a unique and critical role in our daily living. The positive effects of good listening are far-reaching and are based on key physiological understandings, which have become known over the last few decades. For instance:

 

  • The ear is the first organ to grow in utero.

 

  • Sound is critical in normal human development.

 

 “Stimulation activates neural pathways and, in the developing fetus and infant, acts as an organizing principle for the developing nervous system.” *

 

  • The ear and nervous system are intricately connected.

 

- The vagus nerve travels from the ear/vestibular system/brain throughout the body, affecting major organ function.

 

-The vestibular/cochlea nerve from the inner ear is connected to the brain and monitors balance.

 

  • The ear is connected to the body through three tracts Tomatis called integrators:

 

- Vestibular (or somatic) integrator for body image, movement

 

- Visual (or spatial) integrator for ear/eye connection

 

- Cochlear (or linguistic) integrator for brain stimulation

 

Tomatis proved, and we now understand, that if you change the ear, you affect all of the body’s major organs. These changes, in turn, can produce revolutionary changes and improvements in how we function. With the Tomatis Method, people of all ages can imagine new possibilities, expand their capabilities, and realize their dreams.

 

* Tomatis as quoted from in Dr. Susan Andrews and Billie Thompson: “An Historical Commentary on the Physiological Effects of Music: Tomatis, Mozart and Neuropsychology.” Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science: Official Journal of the Pavlovian Society. 35: 3 (2000): 183.

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How We Help Adults

The Tomatis Method Helps Adults With:

 

  • Auditory processing issues

  • Dyslexia, comprehension issues

  • Stress and related issues

  • Memory, low energy

  • Adult autism, Alzheimer’s for memory

  • Organization and directions

  • Ear issues

  • Reduce anxiety

 

In order to:

 

  • Improve memory, word recall, name recognition

  • Calm constant mental chatter

  • Bring richness to their language

  • Jump start imagination and nourish new ideas

  • Strengthen self-motivation and self-esteem

  • Establish a positive view of life, easing worries

About Dr. Tomatis

Dr. Alfred Tomatis

The original Tomatis® Method is based on the work of Alfred A. Tomatis, MD (1920 - 2001). Dr. Tomatis, a French Ear, Nose and Throat physician, pioneered a multi-disciplinary science called Audio-Psycho-Phonology (APP) over 60 years ago. His work resulted from his curiosity about the vital influence of the human ear on a healthy mind, body and spirit. Tomatis noted that the ear is the first organ to grow in utero and as a result, a fetus begins to hear sound and learn language from its mother’s voice.

 

Tomatis concluded that overall human health sources from the health of one’s ear. He developed, researched and proved his theory: the voice only produces what the ear hears. His theory was independently confirmed at the Sorbonne in 1957 and became known as the Tomatis Effect.

 

Tomatis summarized his theories in three laws:

 

  1. The voice only contains what the ear can hear.

  2. If the hearing is modified, the voice is immediately and unconsciously modified; and

  3. It is possible to durably transform phonation when auditive stimulation is maintained over a certain time (the law of duration or remanence).

 

“And yes! Now I understand how the ear grows the brain.”

— Don Campbell Preface to The Conscious Ear

 

Tomatis imagined re-training the ear to re-gain sounds that are either weak or lost in hearing, and he found a way to do it. These losses could result from a difficult pregnancy or birth, early childhood colds and illnesses, accidents, living near loud sounds, emotional trauma, or a myriad of experiences that alter how a person hears sounds. His curiosity led him to experiment with classical music and different ranges of sound. He discovered that listening problems are the root cause of many learning difficulties. Ultimately, Tomatis developed a highly effective technique to remedy learning concerns–the Tomatis Method–and proprietary equipment to provide auditory re-training.

FAQ

Answers to most of these questions can be found throughout this website. 

Here are some short answers to frequently asked questions.

 

Q: How long does the average program take?

 

A: For most people, the process includes a minimum of 60 hours of listening in two-four listening intensive phases (up to 2 hours daily for 10-15 days). This is usually completed in less than 3 months. Most people benefit from a third listening phase, thus the standard program at MMM is a minimum of 3 listening intensive phases.

 

The listening intensive phase includes passive listening where the client simply listens to the individualized music program selected for his or her own ears.

 

Additional listening phases may be appropriate depending on the severity of the case and the individual's goals.

 

Q: What do we do in between the listening phases? 

 

A: In order to get the most out of the Tomatis Method®, we recommend that most of our client participate in active voice work using the ForBrain® during the listening breaks and for a short period after their entire listening program. The ForBrain® can be rented from MMM or purchased for your personal use as well.

 

Q: What do these ForBrain® ‘active sessions’ look like? 

 

A: Each client is given ‘active voice work’ recommendations based on their own profile.  Some recommendations include: wearing the ForBrain® for 10-20 minutes while reading out loud, singing, talking or listening to a parent read. 

 

Q: Do I have to sit still during the two hours of daily listening?

 

A: No.

 

Children may play, participate in OT activities, play games, do arts & crafts or simple non-reading based homework. 

 

Adults may do leisure activities, chores or simple work, if desired, although reading and use of screens (tv, phone, computer) is not promitted during the listening hours. 

 

Q: Where is the Tomatis Method available?

 

A: Mighty Minds and Muscles (Director: Padra Smith, MS, OTR/L, SIPT) is currently the only authorized provider in lower Manhattan and in Jersey City and Hoboken, NJ.

 

If there is not a provider in your area, please contact us for a consult regarding a possible home program through out distance program.

 

Q: What types of results are we likely to see?

 

A: Some of the concrete changes that may be seen include:

 

  • A child with attention challenges may complete work in a more timely manner

 

  • Greater resiliency

 

  • A good student may reduce the number of hours spent on homework

 

  • An active person begins to hear information the first time it is said instead of having it repeated

 

  • A struggling adult may be better able to keep a job or cope better 

 

  • Eye-contact during a conversation may be improved and more natural

 

  • Decisions can be easier to make

 

  • Recalling words and names may come more easily

 

  • General communications improvements both at home and at work

 

  • Overall daily energy is continuous throughout the day and into the evening

 

  • Person may try a new sport or activity

 

  • Self-esteem improvements and new ideas emerge

 

  • One may be less anxious or less stressed 

 

  • You are excited and motivated to take action

 

  • People begin to believe again in possibilities

 

Q: Are the resulting changes lasting?

 

A: Once the program is completed, changes will typically last. Any future stress or trauma to the ear such as severe illness or an accident may result in changes to a person’s listening skills. This can be corrected with additional Tomatis programing.

 

Q: How do I start?

 

A: Call (917) 960-0250 or email info@mightymindsandmuscles.com to learn more about the program or to schedule your initial consultation.

 

Q: Does this process help hearing loss?

 

A: If there is neurological damage to the ear, the Tomatis Method® will not correct this loss. However, if there is loss without cause, there may be a chance to improve a person’s awareness and use of the their remaining hearing by doing this program. At present, we have no scientific evidence to support this, but many Tomatis Practitioners experience improvements with clients whose hearing has been affected.

 

Additionally, those with hearing loss may experience enhanced body awareness (due to the bone conduction delivery) and thus feel more grounded or see improvements in their balance, registration of movement or overall anxieties. 

 

Q: Can the Tomatis Method be combined with other therapies?

 

A: The Tomatis Method® works on the ear as a vital part of the body’s function. Many therapists, such as speech, occupational, and physical therapists, recommend the Tomatis Method® to their clients as complements to their programs. We may also recommend massage, reflex integration work, cranial sacral, and chiropractic therapies in conjunction with your Tomatis program.

 

When completed in-clinic at MMM the client also participates in traditional O.T. work, body work, meditation, mindfulness, yoga, and other activities. 

 

Q: Why does the program use the music of Mozart?

 

A: Mozart’s music is very complex, covering a wide range of sound in most pieces. A study done at UC Irvine found Mozart touches human brain activity, providing openings for learning. That is why Mozart's music has been proven to be so beneficial for learning and education. Dr. Tomatis found Mozart the most efficient for re-training the middle ear muscles.

 

Q: Can I just listen to Mozart on my IPOD with the same results?

 

A: Studies have shown that listening to Mozart supports learning skills; however, the Tomatis Method® uses patented technology and equipment that individualizes the listening experience and stimulates your ears through a personal program (via air conduction and bone conduction) that dramatically affects auditory processing in an enduring way.

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The TOMATIS® Method is an Educational Program, and is considered neither a medical treatment nor a means to establish a medical diagnosis. The content in this website is for informational purposes only. It should be neither considered as nor substituted for medical advice.