“I wanted to show you these shoe laces I’ve been using. I think that D1 would really benefit from having a pair of these, with his fine motor struggles.” His occupational therapist pointed to her shoelaces, called Yankz!, and explained how they work.
“You just lace them in, cinch them down, and go. He could just slide his feet into his shoes and eliminate a whole bunch of steps in getting ready for the day.”
Seriously?! Eliminate steps? Just slide his feet in? Save time?!?!
Having kids with fine motor difficulties, shoe tying has been a bit of a blessing and a bit of a curse. It has been a blessing because they finally learned HOW and were ABLE to get them tight enough that they stayed tied. Mostly. It’s also been a curse because now I depend on them to get ready to leave. And it takes time. Lots. of. time.
Motor planning that comes naturally to you and I does NOT come naturally to a child with developmental dyspraxia. Motor planning is the whole issue. When you give them a task that has a lots of steps, it’s hard enough. Give him a task that has lots of fine motor steps, and you’ve got…. enough time to make lunch for four people, and EAT, while you wait for him to put on his shoes and get them tied. Yes, really. What I need is a way to save time. Enter Yankz!
I asked for, and received, some Yankz! to try out. I discovered that they were MUCH more generous than I ever hoped for, when this arrived in the mail:
We immediately set to choosing and, er, installing them. It is rather a bit of a process, lacing in these elastic strings with the plastic pulley hook thingy, but we followed the directions on the inside of the package, and went to it. Even the boys set to work on their own. D1, our budding pre-adolescent 11 year old, chose royal blue laces, the same color as the trim on his Cons. D2 chose light blue, which didn’t exactly match his shoes, but he’s a 9-year old boy. They don’t care about things matching. He just likes blue.
As for me, I was super excited to see REFLECTIVE Yankz! Laces, with reflectors on them! You may think I’ve lost it, but you don’t go running at 6am, when it’s still dark out. The only thing that would be cooler is if they lit up. With our newly laced Yankz!, we went about our business.
Yankz! have definitely improved our time-out-the-door. I can tell the boys that it’s time to leave, and they can have their shoes on their feet in moments. Record time! D1 has really appreciated them because he knows how long it takes him to go through the process of putting on his shoes. He likes that he can easily tighten or loosen them, depending on how his feet are feeling, with just a tug or two. His occupational therapist was right. These are perfect for him!
Our other son, 9-year old D2, also likes his Yankz!, but his experience hasn’t been quite as good. This boy is the human equivalent of the Tasmanian Devil. He CAN tear apart a steel anvil, on accident, and not even slow down to view the destruction. Things disintegrate in his presence. So did his Yankz! It is probably also due to the fact that he has these really heavy, wide skater shoes and Yankz! were definitely NOT made for skater shoes.
For me, Yankz! are fantastic. My running shoes are happy. I am happy. I am reflective!! And my shoes never, ever come untied any more.Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links which, if you click over and make a purchase, help to support the costs of keeping this site running. Thank you!