LaGrange Area Department of Special Education

Empowering Those with Autism to Exercise with Evidence-Based Practice - OT/PT CONFERENCE ONLY

 School Based Occupational and Physical Therapy Conference: Supporting Student Outcomes


  •  8:00 am - 9:00 am Check In
  •  9:00 am - 4:00 pm Sessions
  •  Noon - 1:00 pm Lunch (provided)


$125.00 Registration Fee - included breakfast and lunch. Credit Card Payments ONLY. No refunds will be issued for any reason


Registration will open at 8:00 am 9/15/22 and will close when sessions are full or 10/15/22,  whichever comes first

There will be no wait list. Once a session reaches room capacity, it will close and will not allow additional registrations. If the session is full, it will not accept your registration.


After a long wait, we are pleased to present the tenth biennial conference as a forum to share and discuss methods that support best practices for school therapist and promote positive student outcomes. Many of this year's presenters are nationally renowned as experts in fields relating to occupational and physical therapy services delivered in the educational setting. Attendees will expand their understanding of how to utilize their expertise and knowledge to support all students in the school environment.


Due to the continued spread of Covid cases, we ask that you wear a mask at all times with the exception of eating and drinking. Presenters may opt to remove their masks.



Presenters:  David Geslak, ACSM-EP, CSCS; Amber Pantaleo

Session: Empowering Those with Autism to Exercise with Evidence-Based Practice - OT/PT CONFERENCE ONLY

Room: 261

Location:  NIU Naperville Campus

Date:  10/28/2022
Time:  9:00 AM - 4:00 PM


David Geslak, the founder of Exercise Connection, has pioneered award winning & research supported visual exercise tools and programs to improve the lives of those with autism. David began his career as an Assistant Strength Coach for the University of Iowa Football Program. After leaving, he opened a gym where he worked with his first client with autism that changed his career path. He is a former paraeducator and Fitness Coordinator at an autism school, author, and renowned presenter on autism & exercise. His commitment and methodology to bringing exercise to those with autism has been enthusiastically embraced by professionals, higher education, and the autism community around the world.

David is an ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist, NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and has a Bachelor's Degree in Health Promotion. 

Amber Pantaleo, LBS1

As a former special education teacher, Amber was challenged with her District's requirement of 10-minutes of physical activity per day, outside of PE. Knowing the benefits of exercise for those with autism—improve emotional regulation, social skills, language development, and academics—Amber proactively added exercise into her students' classroom routines. Supported with evidence-based practices, Amber successfully embedded exercise through reinforcement, behavior management, and movement breaks. Now the Vice President at Exercise Connection, Amber's expertise helps to develop inclusive solutions that level the playing field for everybody, empowering educators and therapists to successfully teach exercise.


If you have any additional questions please email:







Teaching exercise to those with autism is 75% understanding autism and 25% understanding exercise. This community learns differently and to create successful physical activity programs you need to teach them how they learn best – by embedding evidence-based teaching practices & structured routines. David Geslak and Amber Pantaleo, who have been training individuals with autism for over 15 years, and trained professionals around the world, will enlighten you with new strategies, resources, and protocols that can help your students make the exercise connection.

Continuing Education

IDFPR (Continuing Education Units): Clock Hours - 6
PD Clock Hours (ISBE Evidence of Completion Form): PD Clock Hours - 6


LADSE is a Continuing Education Sponsor for Social Workers, Speech/Language Pathologists, Physical Therapists, and Occupational Therapists.






NIU Naperville Campus

1120 East Diehl Road
Naperville, IL 60563


The registration period has closed for this event.

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