Examples of gross motor skills include sitting, crawling, running, jumping, throwing a ball, and climbing stairs
“Motor skills” start developing in babies as young as 11–12 months of age. “Motor skills” are an important part of gross motor skills and should be developed early on.
If you have a baby, you must act soon to help him/her develop gross motor skills in your child at the right time. Locomotor skills form the basis of sports and leisure activities that a child takes part in as he/she grows up, hence these skills are very important. To know what exactly Motor skills means is of great importance, Let’s start right away.
Motor Skills means the basic ways of movement and coordination that form a foundation for the physical health of the kids. As mentioned above, locomotor skills are a part of gross motor skills which begin to develop in children after they turn one year of age. Walking is the first gross motor skill that develops in a baby, and soon others follow too. There are 2 Types of Motor skills – Fine motor skills and gross motor skills. Fine Motor skills include basic hand movement-happens before month 11. Gross motor skills include hand movement, building big muscles.(This includes walking)
Advantages of PLAY :-
- Strengthens balance, motor skills, and body awareness
- Improves muscle strength, coordination, and flexibility
- Generates healthier bone density
- Assists in better control of weight
- Improves social skills
- Keeps kids active and avoids slackening.
Necessary points to keep in mind in order to improve gross motor skills:-
- Hand-Eye and Hand-Foot Coordination
- Muscle Strength
- Bilateral use of hands
Activities to build gross motor skills :-
- Balls: Use a variety of sizes and textures for bouncing, kicking, throwing, catching, and chasing. Ball activities help develop hand-eye and foot-eye coordination and motor planning. Bouncing on a hopper ball can help a child with body awareness and balance.
- Swings: Swinging helps strengthen the core and work on balance and they are just fun!
- Bubbles: Bubbles can be used to work on a variety of motor components to build motor skills including body awareness, strength, hand-eye, hand-foot coordination, and bilateral hand use. The child can pop the bubbles using various body parts, clap hands together to pop bubbles, jump on the bubbles or jump to reach the bubbles, or use a stick or bat to pop the bubbles.
- Sidewalk Chalk: Chalk can also be used to work on balance and strength. The child can walk on chalk lines with various turns and curves or create a hopscotch pattern that is used for both two-footed jumping and single-leg jumping.
- Unstable Surfaces or Stepping Stones: Walking over unstable surfaces, such as pillows, bean bags, blankets, or stepping stones on the floor makes the trunk work hard to maintain an upright position and challenge balance.
- Swimming: While swimming the body has to work against the resistance of the water, thus providing better awareness of where the body is in space.
- Motor Movement Songs: Motor activities set to music help develop coordination, body awareness, and motor planning.