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An individual’s sensory processing involves the reception, modulation, integration, and organization of sensory stimuli, as well as behavioral responses to sensory input (Dunn, 2001). Adults with sensory processing challenges may come across troubles with completing routines and tasks for work, social participation, and leisure (STAR Institute for SPD, n.d.). Since most individuals with these sensory processing challenges have struggled with symptoms continuously, they are likely to encounter secondary effects such as depression, underachievement, and social isolation (STAR Institute for SPD, n.d.). Adults with sensory processing deficits may experience difficulties with establishing their role in society, maintaining social support systems, and pursuing higher education (Clince et al., 2016). Sensory processing challenges can potentially hinder an individual’s ability to participate in meaningful occupations, including gym participation. OTs are professionals who understand the dynamic interaction between individuals, environments, and the occupations in which they wish to partake in, and OTs specialize in promoting greater accessibility (AOTA, 2020). However, OTs have yet to create programming or recommendations to enhance the experience and participation individuals in a fitness gym context. This project helped uncover the current needs in terms of sensory processing and inclusivity within Crunch Fitness, San Marcos. The program was designed based on the common themes found in the needs assessment regarding sensory preferences and inclusion. It was intended to optimize gym participation and feelings of inclusion within the facility by providing guidance and options for self-regulation regarding incoming sensory stimuli.

Publication Date

Summer 8-12-2021


University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences


Occupational Therapy, Sensation, Perception, Exercise, Social Participation, Self-Control

Medical Subject Headings

Occupational Therapy, Sensation, Perception, Exercise, Social Participation, Self-Control


Occupational Therapy | Sports Sciences


Poster presented at the Summer 2021 Virtual OTD Capstone Symposium at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences held online on August 12, 2021.

Exploring Sensory Processing & Inclusivity within a Fitness Gym Environment