When using a ball with upper extremity and brain skill building we can often forget some opportunities that are out of the norm. Here are some additional ideas that do not often come to mind.
-Roll a ball along one extended arm, across your chest and down the other arm extended. As the ball travels along your chest, the hands have to switch moving the ball.
-Try transferring 3,4 or 5 balls in a row (as seen in the picture)from one location to another.
-Use drum sticks and stabilize balls between your legs while sitting on a mat/floor. Keep eyes on the balls as you play them as if they were drums and don’t hit your legs. This is good for attention and rhythm, body awareness and core strengthening and ROM(range of motion).
-Try traveling a ball around your waist, you will need to switch hands on one side and then another. Great for crossing midline and body awareness!
-While seated, move a ball along the entire length of your body.
-Lay down and move a ball around you as if you were tracing yourself. Body awareness building does not get better than this! Keep that ball against your body the entire way for proprioception, sensory input, and motor control.
-Try moving the ball all around the lateral sides of your body while standing on your 2 feet. At some point, you will need to lift each foot off the ground in order for the ball to pass under it (or you can cheat and move it around your toes). Let’s face it, any time we can use a ball in therapy, we can make it more fun.
-Depending on what ways you take the ball around your body, you my increase body awareness and flexibility to improve ADL functioning.
-Most of these ball activities can also be done in a pool.
Remember, the size of a ball can emphasize different skills. Use a small bouncy ball for dexterity and task attention building.