Developing balance skills with the introduction of items into the play environment that encourage Vestibular development (physical coordination and balance) is vital. Helping our children develop the receptors within the inner ear which respond to motion or changes in head position integrates the neck, eyes and body to influence balance, muscle tone and the coordination of both sides of the body.
Proprioception is the unconscious awareness of sensations from our joints, muscles and ligaments.
This is essential to help us so that we do not need to look to know where our arms and legs are when moving.
Activities for developing balance skills and the proprioceptive sense generally have a calming effect.
The sense of touch is our brains major source of information on the environment around us. It is also the system by which our body learns about movement and position in space.
Sensory play is vital for helping the nervous system receive sensory messages. Examples of this are sight, sound, touch, hearing, smell but also vestibular (balance) and proprioceptive (internal body awareness).
Source: NHS Wales ‘Sensory Integration’