What are balance and coordination?
Balance and co-ordination are important developmental skills. Balance is the ability to maintain your body position while you are doing something. This could be while you are sitting at a desk, crossing the road or walking up stairs. To be able to do many different movements across lots of different environments, we need to maintain our body position during still and moving activities.
Static balance is holding a controlled body position while still. Dynamic balance is holding a controlled body position while moving.
Why are balance and coordination important?
Good balance and coordination means that a child can participate in lots of physical things. It means they can do sport at school with reasonable ease. When they have good balance and co-ordiantion they are more likely to be regulated and focused across the day. They are able to take in the social activities more easily.
When children have good balance and coordination they won’t get injured as easily. They can put their hands out to protect themselves when they fall. Balance and coordination helps children sit for longer periods at their desk in the classroom.
How can I tell if my child has problems with balance and coordination?
These children :
- Fall often or trip frequently
- Don’t correct their balance if they start to fall
- Movements are stiff and not smooth
- Avoid outdoor activities
- Are often behind in their gross and fine motor skills development
- Are slower to learn to climb ladders at the playground and ride their bikes
- Aren’t as good at sports as their friends
- Can get scared on swings or in activities where they are off the ground
- Have difficulty standing on one leg to get dressed
- Have trouble on even ground
- Get more tired than their friends
What to do if your child has balance and co-ordination issues
Occupational Therapists work with children who have balance and co-ordination issues. The Occupational Therapy Assessment looks at the reason why the child has difficulty in this area. They write up intervention goals for therapy and each child has a program to follow at home. The Occupational Therapists in our Bondi Junction work with many children who have co-ordination issues. Call us on (02) 80657837 or email us and we can talk to you about the best plan for your child.