Playground Play: gross motor skills at the park

Playground Play

Summer is a great time for getting out to your neighborhood park! Playgrounds are an amazing resource for kids to build their gross motor skills as they explore their environment with family and friends.


Check out this video to hear from one of our physical therapists all about playground play.


The following are typical structures found on playgrounds and how they can help to work on motor skills:

Balance Beam: A lot of playgrounds will be ringed by plastic beams that are great for working on single leg balance and tandem stepping. Have your kids see if they can walk around the entire playground!

Ladders/Rock Walls: This is the most varied part of playgrounds, different types of ladders or rock walls to climb in order to reach a platform. They each require motor planning and leg/core/arm strength to navigate.

Stairs: Have your kids practice stairs in multiple ways. Encourage switching feet on each step, having hands in the air like a roller coaster, or going up sideways to make those muscles work!

Swings: Independent swinging is a very difficult task to master. It requires core and arm strength along with leg coordination to pump back and forth and get the swing going.


Want some more ideas for games to play with your kids at the playground? Check out this post for more ideas. Have fun on the playground!


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