What You Need to Know about Gross Motor Skills

Have you noticed that your child is struggling with activities that involves large movements, like throwing a ball? If so, you may have heard that your child has trouble with gross motor skills.

Gross motor skills are skills that allow children to do things that involves the use of the large muscles in the torso, arms, and legs to complete whole-body movements. Activities like climbing, and jumping jacks are examples of activities that involves the large muscles. This helps children to have successful experiences at school, on the playground, in the community and even has a big impact of everyday functions.

Importance of Gross Motor Skills

Gross motor skills are much more complex than you think. These skills involve the coordination of the muscles and the neurological system. They impact balance and coordination. They also form the basis for Fine Motor Skills that help us make small movements.

Gross motor skills are related to other skills like:

  • Balance
  • Coordination
  • Body Awareness
  • Physical Strength
  • Reaction time

Gross motor skills are important to enable a child to perform everyday functions, such as walking, running, playground skills like climbing , and sporting skills like catching and throwing a ball. It is also essential for everyday self care skills like dressing and climbing into and out of the bed.

What do troubles with gross motor skills looks like?

Children that has difficulties in gross motor skills commonly show:

  • Avoidance or general disinterest in physical activities
  • Rush task performance of physical tasks (to mask difficulty or fatigue)
  • Silly task performance of physical task they find challenging
  • Bossiness in telling others how to do the physical task or play the game without actively engaging themselves

What to do when your child is having troubles with gross motor skills?

If you are concerned that your child might be struggling with gross motor skills, you can talk to your GP and or a Occupational Therapist and a comprehensive initial assessment will be done. Following the assessment a comprehensive report will be written, outlining the goals for your child and guidelines for their therapy interventions.

Happy Dots is a privately owned Paediatric clinic located in the Hunter Region (Cardiff & Medowie), which offers a friendly, professional and sensory based approach for children of varying conditions, aged between 2-18 years of age. We strive for sensory & play based therapy that is FUN! For enquiries, you may contact us on (02) 4959 8920 or email us at admin@happydots.com.au.

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