holding technique-to teach time-out...opinions???

Hi! I just read a book: "Try and Make Me!" Simple Strategies that turn off the Tantrums and turn on Cooperation. I think it is really good.

My daughter has never been able to go to time out and stay there quietly until I told her she could leave! I had to carry her there...hold her in...lock her in...and deal with her kicking on the door and yelling the entire time.

Well, the authors of this book suggest "holding technique" If your child won't go to time out or won't stay and carry it out the way you want them to... you hold them down(in a way that won't hurt them of course)...and give them a chance to comply like once every 5-10 minutes....this depends on the childs age.

I used the holding techinique on my daughter for 1 hour and finally got her to comply last night...1 battle won...not the war.

I WANT YOUR OPINION OF THIS METHOD! HAVE ANY OF YOU EVER USED IT! If this worked does it mean she probably isn't ODD?

Thanks! TRacy

L.A. Guy

New Member
I tried a holding technique on my son when he was about 3 and I ended up with a broken nose, needless to say i do not do that anymore.


Interesting you should ask, there is a thread in the General Post about "Hug Therapy"...has some comparisons of the Hug Therapy vs. what I thought they were talking about, the "Time-Out Hug". Someone else also referred to the "Basket"...that thread may have some ideas for you.
Anyway, I found the Time-Out Hug indispensible! Was the most effective method for preventing difficult child from hurting himself or me during a meltdown. Not that it was the intended result, but it did eventually lead to a regular time-out, by method of coercing, LOL. I offered once he calmed down to allow him a "normal" time-out & that I would not touch him while he was in time-out so long as he took it reasonably without argument. After a few episodes with the additional offer, we were able to switch to regular time-out without too many problems.
He's not an angel, mind you, and I certainly don't think that his compliance with my request that he give me a time-out means he is "less" ODD, I think that he prefers the regular time-out to the thought of having anyone in his personal space while he is raging. Of course, he didn't get the idea until he was, oh, six or seven years old.
Good luck, and by the way, if it works for your family, use it until it don't work no more! :laugh:

I've never personally had to do these type holds (whew!), so can't speak from that experience. If it's the basket hold you're referring too, you might want to get the doctor to show you how to do it. Understanding these techniques are necessary in some situations, it's also my understanding they can be physically harmful if not done correctly.

Rereading this thread before archiving, it's important that you not stop reading this thread too early in my opinion. Fightn4myson post below present very solid information that shouldn't be overlooked.

At age 6, you maight want to try alternative punishments, to see if they work.

For example, I started putting my sons favorite toys in "time out", instead of putting HIM in time out!

It worked just as well, unless the problem was hitting. Time out in a corner DOES tend to wind him down some; putting HIM in the corner therefor works better with hitting.

When my son was 3 years old he wouldn't stay in the corner when I put him there, so I held him by his upper arm to MAKE him stay!

However, that being said, I do NOT believe I would try this with a 6 year old, as I do not thing I could protect myself from him. My arms would be too short to hold him at arms length, he could still reach me. I am too short.

I wouldn't try a basket hold on my child, either, unless HE attacked ME (and he never has), either, as my small one always seems to need "wiggle room", especially when he is upset. His temper REALLY escalates unless he can move SOME! (drumming his heels, fidgeting, or whatever).

I do not know if holding him is a good idea for your child, as each of our kids is so VERY different from each other! What works well for one doesn't mean it will sork for another.

I CAN say that for my child, I have found tha discipline that makes him SAD (favorite toys in the corner) works better than discipline that makes him angry, but that may hold true only for my child.

My child always gets himself into trouble when he gets angry, he really knows how to escalate a situation! Putting up the bike, nintendo or whatever started working for this child when he was about 5 1/2.


New Member
One has to decide why you are using a time-out , it could be as a punishment or a tool to disengage and give you and your child some time and space to calm down. Ideally we should be proactive and avoid these situations. I have never been able to use time-outs as a tool and any physical contact
just escalates the conflict. You can't break


New Member
One has to decide why you are using a time-out , it could be as a punishment or a tool to disengage and give you and your child some time and space to calm down. Ideally we should be proactive and avoid these situations. I have never been able to use time-outs as a tool and any physical contact
just escalates the conflict. You can't break
my boy.I sometimes have to restrain my boy so he does not hurt himself and others
using holding techniques like the basket hold or bear hug - for under 8. Naturally we often show affection, warmth and intimacey by hugging, letting the kid sit on top of us , holding hands etc thus building closeness. Every one does not like to be held or even touched against their will. Dr Greene has said that explosivekids don't like to be touched and this escalates the violence. I try to avoid physical contact when my kid is agressive prefering to be very much on guard blocking his punches and using evey trick in the book to calm him down or try to disengage and detach
The next step is to use the conflict as a window of opportunity to deal with the issues
and show using empathy how things could have been better handled.

Marci Lyn

New Member
I have used the basket hold for many years on my difficult child, now he is way too strong, so we do other holding techniques. But I would talk to your doctor, and ask them to show you the right way so that you donot and difficult child doesnt get hurt. Watch out for the head butts too!

My kids only did the raging lose it thing regularly up until about the age of 4. With my eldest and my youngest they went absolutel ballistic if I tried to touch them. I had to let them kick and roll and scream it out wherever they were. I used to put me in time out where I could see they were okay, but distance myself.
My youngest I actually smacked a couple of times. Not hard and not in anger but it brought him back to where he was and the raging would stop and then I could cuddle him.
The middle one never raged. Just pretended to. Would stop mid-kick to see whether or not I was watching. I could usually just say "are you finished yet?" and he would eventually stop.
I think if it works for you, Keep Doing It.

Good Luck

mine now 5 uses the time out to gather himself. He wouldn't sit in a chair so i would send (put) him in his rm. he would still cry, holler and stomp. I use 1 min per year old as an approiate time. i would then go up ask ask him if he was ready to talk about what ever it was. Sometimes he would say no he wasn't done crying yet. I would let him know it was ok to come down when he was ready. then talk. It was like he had anger and stuff that he just need to get out. trying to hold him when he was angry was not the answer for us. it just upset him more.


New Member
When difficult child was in first grade, I sometimes had to physically restrain him. I would take him upstairs (no mean feat, and sometimes I would just send everyone else upstairs instead). I would take my son and hold him on my lap facing me. If he was hitting I would place his hands in between us, if he was not I would put them around my back. Then I would rock him while speaking softly to him. At first, it could take an hour to calm him down. Gradually less and less time was needed. Sometimes, he fell asleep on me. I knew we had succeeded with this technique when easy child came to me one day at age 4 and said he needed to be rocked!


My now 16 yo difficult child used to throw temper fits
regularly when he was younger. A Child
Occupational Therapist diagnosis'd him with ADHD,
Sensory Integration Dysfunction & borderline
Autism. She recommended the technique
Swaddling. She analogized my son to a
flailing baby that needed to be swaddled in a
blanket when difficult child was out of control. I did
this every time he threw a temper fit, some
times it would take an hour & a half to calm
him down but it was always worth it, as he
would be docile afterwards and to this day I can confirm that it really has paid off. The need to swaddle started happening less & less. I had to restrain him one time about a year ago (i hope it was the last as he is into body building now & is much stronger than I am). Careful...Out of Control
behavior early on was a red flag warning of
what the teen years reveal.

I have used holds on my own son and sometimes on kids at school that I work with.

With my own son I have used them only when he was totally smashing the room and himself in the process. He would fight the hold (please watch your nose and teeth as they tend to headbutt if in a basket hold)but would calm quicker. Like I said though - when I resorted to these holds was times when I knew there was just no coming back from whereever he had gone - he would scream over and over "I CANT STOP I CANT STOP ICANT STOP" Once he had 'calmed' he did his 'normal' time out.

Just a caution - please be careful when using holds - you can easily dislocate shoulders and ribs and internal organs can be bruised. Also - very rapidly the diaphragm can be compressed so badly that in effect it can cut off oxygen. I dont want to scare you, but in a way I do I guess - there have been unfortunate accidents that I have heard of :frown: A doctor might be able to demonstrate how to do them safely, or you could look into taking a CPI training course.