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4 Actions to Develop Locomotor Skills with Students

Among the essential aspects of physical literacy, locomotor skills are crucial as they enable students to engage in various physical activities throughout their lives.

In this blog post, we will explore actionable items to enhance locomotor skills and encourage indoor and outdoor physical activity.

The Importance of Locomotor Skills

Locomotor skills involve moving the body from one place to another and serve as building blocks for various physical activities. Students with proficient locomotor skills can easily participate in sports, games, and recreational activities promoting a lifetime of active living. To ensure students’ well-rounded development, they should be exposed to different environments, such as indoor gyms, outdoor fields, water, ice, and air.

Ways to Develop Locomotor Skills

  1. Explore Different Directions and Speeds: Help students master locomotor skills in various directions – forward, backward, and sideways. Additionally, teach them to control their speed, going slow, fast, stopping, starting, and even freezing. Practice these variations to enhance their overall movement capabilities.
  2. Vary the Levels: Engage students in moving at different heights, from staying low to the ground to reaching their full height. This variation enhances balance, coordination, and body awareness. For example, encourage hopping low and fast or hopping as tall as possible.
  3. Implement a Learning Sequence: Follow an effective learning sequence for teaching locomotor skills. Begin with isolating the skill, allowing students to focus on mastering it step by step. For instance, start with simply hopping on one foot and landing on the same foot repeatedly. Then, add variety by challenging them to hop forward, backward, and sideways using both feet.
  4. Incorporate Games and Activities: Once students have grasped the locomotor skills, incorporate them into fun games and activities—design obstacle courses or relay races that require hopping, running, and other locomotor movements. Using the skills in these exciting contexts automates their use and makes the learning experience enjoyable.

By providing a diverse range of activities, exploring different environments, and following a structured learning sequence, we empower our students to become confident movers and engage in many physical activities. 

Learn more about locomotor skills in our Building Locomotor Skills resource, and find locomotor cues on PLAYBuilder!