How Ball Passing Builds Core Strength
Anyone who visits our playground will notice right away that it’s full of balls of all shapes, sizes, and colors. These aren’t the traditional sports balls you might expect, however. Instead, we keep a variety of therapy balls, including some special shapes, like the peanut ball. These balls serve a variety of different purposes and we have a blast coming up with unique, fun, creative ways to use these tools for therapeutic play.
One of our favorite games to play with the therapy balls is simply called “ball passing.” In this exercise, children form a circle with a therapist leader, and we select a small to medium-sized ball and spend some time passing it around the circle. As the kids get comfortable with passing, we call out the names of different body parts and the participants must use that body part to pass the ball. For example, if the leader calls out “use your foot,” the participants must pass the ball using only their feet. It creates a fun challenge and encourages teamwork as each child anticipates and prepares for the ball to be handed to them, and the act of doing so strengthens their core and arm muscles. All the while, everyone’s learning valuable social skills to complete this activity.
When working with toys during therapeutic play, the goal is always in finding an enjoyable and entertaining way to strengthen a child’s body or skills. Ball passing in a gentle activity that works on multiple fronts, including building core strength. For many small children and children with disabilities, finding activities that strengthen these muscles can be a challenge, but this is an ideal level of play that’s easily adjusted to compensate for everyone’s ability level. Core strength exercises can lead to better motor control, coordination, balance, and mobility. Practicing teamwork helps strengthen social interaction and cooperation skills.
There are many other activities we can do using therapy balls, from simple floor exercises to relay races. Any ball activity can be a great help with injury recovery, building core and arm muscles, honing balance, and much more. You can visit us anytime to see which activities we currently have planned or learn more about how we use therapy balls in play. Want to know more about our team, our services, or our camp and playdates? You can view those pages on our website or drop us a line and we’ll be happy to discuss it with you.