Helping your Child with their Balance + Coordination

12.3.19

Balance is something a lot of us adults take for granted. From going down the stairs, to even just sitting at the table, balance plays a key role in a lot of day-to-day activities. For children though, balance is something they need to master as they develop. This is why it’s important that they’re involved in activities that help encourage coordination and balance from a young age. With that in mind, here are some of the top activities that can help teach your child the skills they need.


Swimming
When you’re submerged in water, you have to learn how to work against the resistance of the water, while also using it to your advantage. Understanding how your body works differently in water is key to developing new coordination and balance skills, and it also helps your child begin to develop spatial awareness.

Cycling and Roller Skating
We all remember that feeling of riding our first bike - it’s terrifying but such an exciting feeling once you master it. Riding a bike or whizzing around in a pair of roller boots is all about learning how to position your body, so you maintain your balance. And although quite daunting initially, it’s the perfect way to help your children get used to using their posture to stay coordinated.

Playground Games
Climbing ladders, swinging on ropes and walking across suspended bridges all require a lot of concentration and agility. When things move unexpectedly (such as the swing bridge moving suddenly), it requires a lot of core strength to regain control over our bodies. So even though jungle gyms and playgrounds just seem like great fun to children, they’re actually teaching them valuable skills while training their core.

Simple playground games such as hopscotch and stepping stones are also brilliant for coordination. Hopscotch requires the rapid and frequent change in movements, while stepping stones mean leaping certain distances. All of these challenge your child’s coordination and balance.


What if your Child is Still Struggling with their Balance?
While it’s inevitable that your child may fall over on occasions, or lose control of their bike while riding, there are some other key signs that your child may need help with their balance and coordination.

These include:

* Frequently falling or tripping (and being unable to rebalance themselves quickly).
* Lacking fluid movements so they look more robotic.
* Refraining from joining in with physical activities.
* Being late to start walking or crawling, or other more physical activities.
* Having trouble in certain environments, such as uneven ground or steps.
* Struggling to get dressed standing up.

In cases such as these or if you're particularly worried, you should seek the advice of your doctor. It may be something that can be helped with a bit of support. And catching it early will help ensure your child’s development isn’t hampered in any way.
This is a collaborative post.

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