Monkey bars can be a little daunting, even for the most intrepid jungle gym user. Like all things in life, everyone has to try something new for the first time and mastering a new skill will boost your child’s self-esteem. And in the case of monkey bars, building upper body strength and encouraging balance are critical skills for the development of gross motor skills.
How it builds muscle
The motion that children use as they hang and swing from one bar to the next significantly enhances upper body strength. Requiring the use of every muscle and tissue from the tips of their fingers to their lower body, the pulling motion also encourages lung inflation and bladder support simply because of the way our muscles are connected and are being used.
It’s all about gross motor skills and balance
The benefits of monkey bars are numerous and critical to the foundation that sets the tone for your child’s school career:
1. Swinging and hanging upside down on monkey bars helps children to enhance their balance and develop a solid sense of their body’s position in space. This makes other physical activities easier, including sitting still for longer periods.
2. The grip that children use to hold each monkey bar (thumb gripping underneath the bar) is the same natural grip used to hold a pencil. Strengthening their grip will make it easier for them to write.
3. Children who have well developed gross motor skills find it easier to learn to write, cut and colour. In other words, the fine motor skills used for writing can only develop when the gross motor skills are developed.
4. Mastering the monkey bars teaches children important skills like how to use their body to solve a problem. It also gives them stamina and boosts their confidence – there is nothing like mastering a new skill to boost a little person’s confidence
Encouraging children to play on monkey bars
Learning through play is a critical part of every child’s education. Not only does it enhance physical ability, it boosts their confidence and stamina. Make sure that your child regularly plays on a jungle gym so they can practice swinging, bouncing and climbing. Fit children are happier and healthier!