Gross Motor Skills

What are Gross Motor skills?

Gross motor skills involve the coordination of large muscle groups in the body to perform movements such as walking, kicking, sitting upright, lifting and throwing a ball. Muscle strength and neurological development are two contributing factors to achieving gross motor milestones.

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Check out this infographic about Gross Motor Skills Milestones

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What are some symptoms of poor gross motor skill development?

Children with poor gross motor development may demonstrate problems throwing and catching a ball, riding a bicycle, climbing stairs or walking appropriately. If a child’s gross motor skill development is delayed, he may demonstrate clumsy movements which signals low muscle tone.

How do I know if my child is progressing normally?

Parents are often concerned about whether or not their child is growing appropriately for his age. Children grow and develop in stages and, generally, maturation occurs from the ‘top down’–the neck muscles strengthen first, the neck then gains strength, enabling the child to hold up his head, the shoulders then strengthen, then the upper arms, and ultimately the child gains hand control. Following hand control, a child gains trunk control, followed by the hips and pelvis and eventually the legs.

How do I help treat my child’s poor motor skill development?

Dancing to music is a great way to strengthen one’s muscle tone and improve motor skills. Riding a bicycle, balancing on a balance beam and playing tag can be fun ways for your child to exercise his muscles and incorporate physical activity into his daily routine.

Our approach at North Shore Pediatric Therapy

At North Shore Pediatric Therapy, our energetic and experienced physical therapists will evaluate your child’s gross motor skills and set up an individualized treatment plan which enables your child to succeed. If needed, a therapist will visit your child’s school to see how he performs physically on stairs, in physical education class and during academic time. Treatment will include a home exercise program to enable your child to take the skills he learns in our facility and transfer them into his home and school environments.