Pre- and during-school
Once in the school classroom, findings show that children who have had the opportunity to strengthen their core stability are able to sit up straight in their chairs and concentrate far longer than those who are slumped, as the lungs aren’t getting the same amount of oxygen to the brain.
Gross and Fine Motor Skills:
Gross motor skills are the first movement skills that a child develops. It involves the movement of large muscles of the body and includes balance, hand eye co-ordination and motor planning (ability to plan movement). Gross motor skills develop over a relatively short period of time and most of this development occurs during childhood. The development of fine motor skills allows one to be able to complete tasks such as writing, coloring in a picture, buttoning, or tying their shoelaces. At Playball, we believe that sports can play a pivotal roll in developing these skills. Motor skills usually develop together since many activities depend on the co-ordination of gross and fine motor skills. For example, throwing a baseball, while learning to hold a ball correctly has a direct impact on how kids hold a pencil correctly in amongst other skills that are taught to encourage fine and gross motor skill development.
Body and spatial awareness
This is of massive importance as it helps a child understand where he or she is in relation to the world around them. Children who constantly bump into objects or who seem clumsy are lacking spatial awareness, balance and possibly gross motor coordination. Playball encourages personal and spatial awareness through a plethora of age-specific exercises and skills.
Bilateral integration is the ability to co-ordinate the use of both sides of the body simultaneously. Midline crossing is the ability to cross the longitudinal axis the body with the eyes or the hands, for example, reaching for an object on the right side of the body using the left hand. Bilateral integration and midline crossing are important developmental aspects, which can influence the successful execution of both fine and gross motor skills. In our Playball classes, we actively encourage midline crossing through various exercise and skills so that when they start midline crossing in the classroom, for example drawing left to write or reading, they will be able to achieve this more readily.
Problems that can occur in early school years due to poor midline crossing:
- Reading and comprehension math solving
- Listening skills