Top Balance and Coordination Exercises for Children Part Three
Exercises that will improve balance, coordination and overall focus in the classroom. We have found that if students can improve their balance and coordination, it has a flow-on effect to their schooling. They instantly become more confident and have an improved attitude, which is what all teachers like to hear.
Nose and Ears
Students start by touching their right ear with their left hand and then place their right hand on their nose. Next the students touch their left ear with their right hand and place their left hand on their nose. Repeat this for 30 seconds.
Walk the Ball
Students start by using the fingers of their hand to walk a tennis ball up their left leg. Then they continue across their stomach and down their right leg. Make sure the students use their dominant hand, otherwise some students will find this fine motor skill very challenging. It’s important to make sure they use a walking motion with their fingers and not a grabbing motion.
Students start by walking heel-to-toe on the floor. Then students walk heel-to-toe slowly along the straight line on the floor. The straight line can be anywhere from one metre to five metres long. If students struggle to walk heel-to-toe on the floor, then just have them walk normally along the straight line without stepping off, and as they improve, get them to walk heel-to-toe for short periods on the straight line.
Give students a beanbag each and ask them to balance this on their head while they stand still. Once they have mastered this balance, ask them to move normally around the room balancing the beanbag on their heads. If they can do this then ask them to try balancing on one foot with the beanbag on their heads. The final challenge is for them to shut their eyes while balancing on one leg. Time students to see how long they can hold this balancing act for.
These are a series of balance challenges that you can test your class with. How long can the students balance on their right foot? How long can the students balance on their left foot? Can the students balance on their right toes? Left toes? Can the students balance on their right foot and extend their left leg in the air? Can the students balance on one foot with their eyes closed? How long for? These challenges can be used each week to see if the students are improving and gaining better balance and coordination of their bodies.
Students all start by standing with a tennis ball each. This challenge is to improve hand-eye coordination. Students start with the tennis ball straight out in front of them in their dominant hand. They then drop the ball from eye height, and then using the same hand they must catch the ball before it hits the ground. Once they have mastered this, try performing the ball drop on their non-dominant hand. This will be much harder and a great challenge for most students.