Why Motor Skills Matter

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“Play is really the work of childhood.” -Fred Rogers

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We are a team of pediatric physical therapists who are passionate about all things movement.  Through this forum, we aim to enlighten you with our knowledge on “Why Motor Skills Matter!” We are thrilled to share with you this first blog post, written by Cara Yochai, DPT.

 

 

Have you ever watched a child play? If not, I highly recommend it. It is a humbling reminder of all that the human body is truly capable of. It helps adults remember movement patterns that were easy when they played in childhood.  Yet, the same movements may now frighten in adulthood. What if adults joined their children in these playful movements? The child above is able to hold a deep squat, while engaging in a fine motor task as he draws and colors with chalk.  During play, physical activity becomes enjoyable again.

There are so many opportunities to play, especially outside in this beautiful summer weather. Here are a few simple ideas to try outside with your kiddies:

  • Draw with chalk:

    • Try drawing in a squat or while on the tummy.

  • Hopscotch with rocks:

    • Jump with both feet, then try with one! Switch off each time.  

    • Try and aim for a specific number.

  • Jump over the crack in the sidewalk

    • Jump forward, backward, and sideways!

  • Create shadow creatures during sunset

    • Simulate standing tall and still like a tree. Pretend to be a certain letter of the alphabet.

    • Try and guess what your child is pretending to be.

These are just a few ideas, but the possibilities are endless.  Adults often have to designate specific time to workout. A child, however, has the chance to workout throughout the day. Don’t underestimate the hard work that your child is participating in.

Encourage your child to play. Play well and play often!  

Please share if you and your child try any of these outdoor activities!

 

Connor McCarthy