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Research Article  |   November 2001
The Use of a Weighted Vest To Increase On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Difficulties
Author Affiliations
  • Nancy L. VandenBerg, MS, OTR, is Occupational Therapist, Plainwell Community Schools, Plainwell, Michigan. At the time of this study, she was Student, Master of Science in Occupational Therapy, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan. (Mailing address: 707 S. Woodhams, Plainwell, Michigan 49080; vanden4@aol.com)
Article Information
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder / Neurologic Conditions / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / School-Based Practice / Children and Youth
Research Article   |   November 2001
The Use of a Weighted Vest To Increase On-Task Behavior in Children With Attention Difficulties
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November/December 2001, Vol. 55, 621-628. doi:10.5014/ajot.55.6.621
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November/December 2001, Vol. 55, 621-628. doi:10.5014/ajot.55.6.621
Abstract

Objective.Children described as having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often demonstrate inability to sustain visual attention during classroom fine motor activities. This study investigated the effect of wearing a weighted vest (deep-pressure sensory input) on children's on-task behavior in the classroom.

Method.Four students with documented attention difficulties and hyperactivity were timed with a stopwatch to measure their on-task behavior during fine motor activities in the classroom. All 4 students were timed for six 15-min observations without wearing a weighted vest and for six 15-min observations while wearing a weighted vest.

Results.On-task behavior increased by 18% to 25% in all 4 students while wearing the weighted vest. Additionally, 3 of the 4 students frequently asked to wear the vest other than during the observation times.

Conclusion.These preliminary findings support the hypothesis that wearing a weighted vest to apply deep pressure increases on-task behavior during fine motor activities.