Hand eye coordination is one of the most important components of development in babies and toddlers . Hand eye coordination is related to all throwing, striking and catching, but begins with the simplest of actions, such as grasping movements, reaching for objects and moving basic objects around.
Hand and eye coordination is essential for every sports and begins developing from a young age.
A great way to assist the fundamental motor milestones in a child and to spur on hand eye coordination development is with the use of balloons in playtime. Why? Because balloons are slow, big and easy to see, judge and processe accordingly.
Moreover, balloons can be used for a numbers of activities, such as catching and even throwing or chasing. It helps the child not only improve his coordination but also increase physical activity levels. Since balloons are slow moving, it gives the kid opportunity to understand the visual information they are receiving and coordinate an action.
It also teaches toddlers to maintain position their body in relation to a ball. Toddlers reflexes are very slow because they need the opportunity to learn from previous movement experiences and in time the will become faster and faster. They key thing is that children skills need physical activity and play for the to improve.
Hand eye coordination includes throwing as well. Kids have to judge the distance direction and then coordinate their body in an action to meet the demands of the task. Kids can throw the light balloon from above head, on the side like a pass and a chest pass like a basketball. The balloon can’t be thrown far, but you can certainly throw back and forth from a close distance. The floating balloon on the return throw gives great opportunities for throwing.
Kids throwing, catching and striking skills go through big developmental stages from 2 to 5 years.
Other great activities that can be included with balloon play are with other balls, throwing at trees, throwing for the dog and moving and making sounds like different animals. There are so many different games to play to develop catching, throwing and striking skills.
Throwing or striking does not require extra specific teaching or instructions. It is natural and develops as baby grows into young kids. However, these skills only develop naturally if they are having the opportunity to actually have a go at them. Without play that involves catching and throwing, catching and throwing skills won’t emerge quicky and continue to become more efficient and accurate.
Rather than trying to really teach every aspect of catching, throwing and striking skills, rather just give some very simple cues when required like bring the hands a bit closer together for catching or bend the elbow in preparation for throwing.
Catching is a big part of hand eye coordination. The underlying development that allows catching skills to emerge is very important for many sports that involve not just catching but any striking skill also. So try the balloon to begin with. Run after the balloon for catching, jump for the balloon to catch and try doing a number of quick balloon catches in a row. Keep making the tasks in play a little more difficult and watch their hand eye coordination really advance until the balloon becomes way to easy.
Find more information relating to kids sports games, and children throwing skillss here.