Working on Balance During Pediatric Physical Therapy In Home By: Meagan Corriveau, PT, DPT
Is your child working on balance in therapy?
Balance is a skill that we focus on in physical therapy from early walking through grade school. You need balance to take your first steps, and you also need balance to succeed during PE class and recess. Balance requires strength, coordination and proprioception--the knowledge of where your body is in space. There are endless ways to practice balance both inside and outdoors.
What we recommend:
All of the pieces of the balance puzzle can be practiced using a simple bowling game. I find that sometimes the simplest activities can leave the most room for creativity, and the ability to focus on the child’s specific needs. If your little one is working hard towards walking, you can use this set to practice balancing on one foot, and kicking over the bowling pins (holding hands can be a modification to help even more). You can also build essential leg strength by having your little squat down and pick up the bowling pins. If your child is older, practicing bowling is great to build hand-eye coordination and proprioception. You can also add multiple variations including bowling on one foot, bowling while standing on an uneven surface (ie. a throw pillow), or bowling from a deep squat to work core strength.
This game can be great inside, or even taken outside during the warmer months to help keep the child engaged. Bowling in the grass requires more skill than on a smooth surface, and switching it up requires your child to adapt to a new environment. If your child is more advanced, you can even use these pins as cones during an obstacle course. There are so many possibilities!
How we can help:
This inexpensive bowling set is a real game changer, and available on amazon for less than $25. It can help advance your child’s gross motor skills from their toddler years through grade school. This set really speaks to our child-specific and creative nature at Beyond Speech Therapy Specialists. It allows for targeted play towards your child’s goals. If you are having concerns about your child’s motor or language development we are here to help! We offer in-home assessments and free screenings. If you are looking for the best pediatric therapy near you, click here.