Gross Motor Development

Moving your body, whether in play or in the course of daily activities, helps children to keep their attention, allows them to engage in play skills like running, jumping, and ball skills and helps them to easily engage in self care skills such as dressing, getting on/off the toilet, getting in/out of the car, and stepping over objects on the floor or moving around furniture.

Occupational Therapists help children enhance their body or spatial awareness, physical coordination, endurance and planning and sequencing of their movements in order to develop their physical skills for play, moving around and self care skills.

Children who struggle with whole body movement skills can have difficulties with:

 

Physical skills

  • Rapid fatigue/tiring or showing only short bursts of energy
  • Avoiding or not appearing interested in physical activities
  • Rushing 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
  • Being clumsy, awkward and/or not seeming to learn from their mistakes
  • Less than age appropriate physical skills (eg swimming, bike riding, ball skills)

 

Self Care skills

  • Dressing
  • Toileting
  • Hygiene (eg brushing long hair)
  • Moving about the house, in/out of the car
  • Manoeuvring around furniture