Top 10 Balance Games for Kids... of All Ages! - Wholesome Life Journal

Top 10 Balance Games for Kids… of All Ages!

We all know that balance is important. We’re talking physical balance here, i.e. the ability to achieve such feats as walking without falling over, carrying a plate of food to the table without dropping it, or riding your bike hands-free while playing the ukulele… you know, all the critical motions that get us through the day. In fact, balance seems like such a simple, natural thing, we often take it for granted. And that, my friends, is where we drop the ball!

Balance is not given, but a learned skill that requires physical and mental effort. As with many such activities, good balance skills come more easily to us when we’re younger: we’re lighter, more compact, more flexible, and less fearful. We also aren’t afraid of looking silly and, should we fall, the ground is only a few short feet away. Practicing balance as a child can help set kids up for a lifetime of strength, grace, and good proprioception. And how do we get kids to learn to new skills without their knowing it? Make a game out of it!

Check-out Our Top 10 Balance Games/Activities:   

1)      Ladder Bridge:

 We snagged this idea from the one, the only, Katie Bowman. All you need is a sturdy ladder (preferably a wooden with rounded, smoothed rungs and laterals); some pillows; and a little space. Just place a pillow or two under each end of the ladder, clear potential obstructions from the space, and let your little ones cross the ladder. They can start on hands and knees and eventually progress to walking. You can take this activity outside too, using rolled-up picnic blankets, hay bales, or even ropes to suspend the ladder at different heights to create new challenges as kids grow taller (and more skilled!) You can see illustrations on Katy’s blog.

2)      Pillow Path: 

No ladder? No problem! Create a trail of pillows around your living room, doubling-up on some and varying the spacing. Better yet, start collecting smooth stepping stones and create and elevated rock path in your back yard. Stone-stepping encourage balance, strengthens foot grip, and creates a textural sensory experience, all at once! Rock or pillow walking. Of course, you maximize these benefits by doing the walk barefoot.

3)      The “Thinker” Pyramid:  This five-person twist on the human pyramid is easier seen than described. Shoot for the oldest/biggest kids at the base and the smallest on top. We recommend that you try this activity with supervision, lots of open space, and soft ground. DEFINITELY no heavy shoes for this one!

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