Good hand-eye coordination is something heavily emphasized as being an important part of any athlete’s repertoire. However, it’s gross motor skills, and not fine motor skills, that need to be developed first.
Fine motor skills deal with small movements in the wrists, hands, fingers, feet and toes. On a more basic level, gross motor skills are involved in the movement of body parts like the arms, legs and other large body parts.
Most parents would probably agree that the development of gross motor skills would come first for their child. These developments come about from activities like running, crawling, and swimming, so it’s clear that early involvement in athletics can accelerate such growth.
Tiger Tennis is a great option for this development. During our sessions, the emphasis we place on fun goes hand-in-hand with basic motor skill functions. The games are quick, fun, and involve lots of basic movements. This provides an atmosphere of spontaneity and repetition for different muscle groups to go to work.
In addition to playing Tiger Tennis in early childhood, there are ways for kids to develop gross motor skills at home during other free time. Here are some ways to exercise those functions:
- Simon Says: it helps develop body awareness
- Going to the playground/doing obstacle courses: climbing, swinging, and other related activities combine different gross motor skills
- Walking on unbalanced surfaces: this requires a lot of focus and helps kids strengthen their bodies while developing balance
- Catching: it’s for more than hand-eye coordination; catching integrates different gross motor skill movements that need to work cohesively
- Running: a classic that goes without saying
- Kicking: (soccer balls and such, not people)
- Jumping: who doesn’t like basketball and trampolines?
In addition to those activities, there’s so much more to do to help develop gross motor functions. For the fun tennis opportunities we have to offer kids, check out our ‘Classes’ and ‘Camps’ sections of the website to get those skills going!