Did you know that simply going to the playground to play with your little one can support their healthy gross motor development? Gross motor skills include crawling, standing, walking, running, jumping, climbing, skipping, dancing…Large movements that involve moving arms, legs, or your entire body are “gross motor.”
Playground and backyard play provide a fun environment for growing toddlers to practice their movement and improve their balance, coordination and strength. Walking on different surfaces, such as the grass, bumpy ground, smooth driveway or sand help your child develop their balance. Jumping (and hopping) over puddles or swinging also help their proprioception. “Proprioceptive” skills help children develop body awareness and body sensing skills. Later in life, these become key to a child’s ability to focus, calm and learn.
How your child moves offers important clues about your child’s development. Developmental milestones are things most children can do by a certain age. Every child is different, but health experts have a clear idea about the range of typical development.
How does your child move? Getting them active and playing outside is a great way to support their healthy development, as well as bond and have fun!