Toby had the priveldge of being selected to do a bit of product testing for LittleLife. Why would you get a non-verbal, disabled child to test a new product? In short because they are just as important as any other child and their views matter too! I am really grateful that LittleLife recognised that children with additional needs love adventures too just as much as any other child, their adventures may be different…but an adventure is still an adventure!
We had a Swimpak and a poncho towel to try for two weeks before completing an online survey. We were away in Scarbrough for one of those weeks which was a perfect opportunity to put the beachy products to the test!
Toby often struggles with new things however he took to the swimpak straightaway. We visited our favourite local pool before we went away for their disability swim session and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I could fit in the Swimpak – towel, swim wear, swim nappies, wipes, clean nappies, bottle of water and a packet of hula hoops (which are essential for after swimming!)
^^Lots of room!
As Toby doesn’t speak we use a lot of objects of reference to help him understand the world around him. For example we show him a reusable shopping bag when we are going food shopping or we show him his membership card for our local adventure farm when we are visiting there etc Toby loves swimming and so we keep his swimming stuff hidden as he sometimes give us his bag or his swimsuit as if to ask if we can go swimming (and it isn’t always possible to go!) After using the bag once he understood that it represented going swimming and so while we were away he would bring us his bag as if to say ‘can we go in the pool now?’ However having to wait until the pool opens at 10am when you want to go now (at some silly time of the morning) is tricky to understand when you have autism. The Swimpaks are avaible on the LittleLife website – LittleLife Swimpak
Now the poncho towel gets a massive thumbs up from us! We were staying in a caravan while we were in Scarbrough with limited drying space. I struggled to get our own towels dry after swimming however the LittleLife poncho was dry super quick and didn’t take up much space at all. The ponchos are made from quick-drying softfibre fabric and they dry up to 8 times faster than standard towels, and can absorb up to 9 times their own weight in water (how good is that?!) I do think it’s a bit sad that I am this excited about a beach towel but we were all really impressed by it. Toby also really enjoyed wearing it after swimming.
We’re off to Center Parks over Christmas and I will certainly be ordering another one for Ted as getting normal swimwear dry in December may be challenging however the LittleLife ponchos are perfect – especially for multiple swimming trips! I also think that their distinctive design looks great for around the pool too. You can buy the towels here – LittleLife poncho towel