April 5, 2021 at 9:10 pm #29291MariaParticipant
Dear WSSA Team,
Not long ago I started to seriously practice crutches – crutch #1 and #4- and I try to use them in real life conversations.
I learned that crutches work best once one becomes proficient in using them.
I am wondering – what I should do next? Of course I know I should continue to practice them, but should I do that as long as I achieve proficiency and then move on to other cruthes OR should I, as soon as possible understand general idea of all of them and practice all of them simultaneously?
Thanks in advance for your response.
MariaApril 6, 2021 at 7:35 am #29292JavierModerator
good question. My advice is to make sure you know them all. The more options you have, the better. In some situations, you’ll find some Crutches easier to use than others. But we all have our favorite ones.
I’m sure your coach has asked you to focus more on certain Crutches. so try to use those ones the most. But that doesn’t mean that you should ignore the rest of them.
Here are some ways to get to master all the Crutches:
1) Reading aloud is a great way to practice the Crutches and being passionate. One of the best ways to practice the Crutches is to use one Crutch per page, on as many words as possible.
2) When speaking, obviously. Give yourself “challenges”. Start with low-pressured situations. For example, speak with your parents, or siblings if you have them. And without telling them, challenge yourself to use, for example, Crutch 4 every now and then, on that conversation. So, I’m not asking you to say it on as many words as possible. I’m suggesting you to use it whenever you need it (obviously), and try to use it every now and then too, even if you don’t need to use it. Get used to it. See it as a practice exercise.
I used to give myself these kind of challenges. Example: “For the next 20 minutes I’m going to try to use C-1 (on a random word, every few sentences, so nobody will notice it).For the following 20 minutes, I’ll do the same, but this time with C-2.” And so on…
But of course, focus the most on the Crutches/speaking style that your coach has suggested you.
I hope I answered your question.April 9, 2021 at 7:30 am #29318Leah AreffModerator
Definitely what Javier said!
The best advice I can give you is to practice the crutches while you are NOT UNDER PRESSURE. So, find whoever it is that you are fluent around, and start talking their ears off of their heads. Why is this the best way to practice the crutches? Because, there is no pressure, so you can concentrate fully on using them without worrying about what the other people will think, and without worrying that your speech is coming across as “weird”.
Sportsmen do NOT only practice when they are in a tournament, if they did, it would be an ABSOLUTE DISASTER. Where do they practice? When they are calm, not under pressure, with their coach, NOT in a tournament (high-pressure situation).
Does this make sense?April 15, 2021 at 7:40 pm #29367MariaParticipant
Thank you Leah and Javier for your detailed responses and handful of practical tips. So I’m focused now on using the crutches in non-pressure conversations. I hope this ridiculous fear of “what other would think of me if I skip that first letter” will vanish with time and I learn to treat using crutches in real conversations is as a fun game and not as a matter of life and death (!).
Thanks again!!April 16, 2021 at 7:48 am #29368JavierModerator
that fear will vanish very soon if you keep on working on the Crutches. For example, when I was speaking with my family or friends, I would use Crutch 1 on random words (once every few sentences, so it is impossible to detect it). And of course, nobody noticed it, and that gave me a lot of condidence.May 11, 2021 at 8:27 am #29797Leah AreffModerator
Also Maria, what do you think people will think if you stuttered? Do you think they would prefer you stuttering than to you dropping the first letter?
As much as we would LOVE to believe that fluent people are patient and understand that we stutter, they do NOT. They get IRRITATED and IMPATIENT as they have no obligation to listen to you stutter.
Do yourself and your listeners a favor, and drop the first letter! I discovered crutch 1 at age 8 and have used it my whole life. It is really fun and in fact, I have shown my PWS how to use it and they always end up telling me that they did not know I used it. And these are people who I ASKED TO LOOK OUT FOR IT. Now imagine the person who has no idea what you are doing?
Lastly, people do not care about your speech! If somebody goes home and says “Gather round family, I have a RIVETING story to tell you. Today, Maria at work said “ater” instead of “water” hahhahahahaahahahahahahahahahahah”.
Now that person needs a LIFE!!!!!!
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