Animal poses/walks are a fun and interactive way to get your child to move, improve gross motor milestones, and work on strengthening, motor planning, flexibility and endurance.
Here are some fun animal walks/poses to try with your child:
To make it more interactive or to target speech encourage your child to make the animal noises when completing the activity.
This is a fun way to work on single leg balance. Have your child stand on one foot for 5-10 seconds. Make sure to do both sides. If this is challenging for your child you can use a chair or counter for balance. If your child is able to stand on 1 leg for 30 seconds or more, try challenging them by having them jump forward on 1 leg and landing on the same leg.
Have your child walk on all fours like a bear. Try to have them keep their arms and legs relatively straight. Bear crawl is a good way to work on core and leg strengthening.
Have your child start on their bottom and push up on to arms and legs. Lift your bottom off the ground and walk forward or backwards on your hands. This can be a fun way to work on arm and leg strengthening and improving wrist flexibility.
Have your child place both feet together and jump forward. If the bunny hop is too easy for your child, you can have them jump over obstacles or in an out of a hula hoop. The bunny hop can help improve your child’s leg strength and improve their jumping ability.
Have your child go into a deep squat and place their hands on the ground. Have your child push through hands and feet and jump forward. It can even be fun to incorporate a leap frog game.
Inchworms are a fun way to work on hip strengthening with your kid. Have the child go into a squat position. While in the squat position, have the child slowly move 1 leg and then step with their other leg. To challenge the child more add a resistance band around their ankle.
-Alexa Bachmann, Physical Therapist