Proprioceptive (Heavy Work) Activities

·         Carry heavy items (baskets with cardboard blocks, groceries for Mom, etc.).

·         Chew gum, eat chewy or crunchy foods, or sip water from a water bottle with a straw while doing homework.

·         Push or pull boxes with toys or a few books in it (more resistance is provided if boxes are pushed/pulled across a carpeted floor).

·         Take the cushions off sofa, vacuum under them, then put them back. Can also climb on them or jump and “crash” into them.

·         Pull other children around on a sheet or blanket.

·         Walk, run, scooter, skateboard, rollerblade uphill.

·         Pull/push a heavy trash can, wagon, or wheelbarrow.

·         Perform household chores, such as:

o        Vacuuming

o        Sweeping

o        Mopping

o        Dusting

o        Carrying the laundry basket

o        Wiping off the table after dinner

o        Carrying buckets of water to clean with or to water flowers/plants/trees

o        Cleaning windows or the fronts of appliances, using a spray bottle

o        Scrubbing rough surfaces with a brush

o        Helping change the sheets on the bed (then tossing the linens down the stairs).

·         Perform yard work, such as:

o        Mowing the lawn

o        Raking the grass/leaves

o        Pushing the wheelbarrow

o        Shoveling

o        Raking

o        Planting

·         Drink thick liquids (as in milkshake, applesauce, or Slurpy) through a straw. The thickness of the straw and the thickness of the liquid can be varied to change the degree of heavy work (sucking) required.

·         Carry heavy cushions.

·         Participate in activities such as gymnastics, horseback riding, wrestling, karate, swimming (can also have child dive after weighted sticks thrown in pool).

·         Fill up a small suitcase with heavy items (such as books) and push/pull the suitcase across the room.

·         Go “shopping” with a child’s shopping cart filled with items, or have the child push the shopping cart when you go shopping.

·         Put large toys and equipment away.

·         Participate in climbing activities (such as playground equipment).

·         Swing from playground equipment.

·         Push against a wall.

·         Participate in sports activities involving running and jumping.

·         On hands and knees, color a “rainbow” with large paper on the floor or with sidewalk chalk outside.

·         You and a partner sit on the floor, back to back, with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Interlock arms, and then try to stand up at the same time.

·         Play “row, row, row your boat” both sitting on the floor, pushing and pulling each other.

·         Do chair push-ups.

·         Play jumping games such as hopscotch and jump rope, or jump on a trampoline.

·         Bounce on a Hippity Hop Ball.

·         Play catch with a heavy ball, or bounce and roll a heavy ball.

·         Do animal walks (crab walk, bear walk, army crawl).

·         Squeezing and flattening between hands a fist-sized piece of Theraputty or Play-doh

·         Eating “chewy” foods

    • Dried fruit
    • Bubble gum
    • Starburst/ Gummy candy/ Taffy etc
  • Eating “crunchy” foods
    • Pretzels
    • Chips
  • Blowing out into something resistive
    • Blowing up a balloon
    • Blowing through a straw into soapy water to make bubbles
    • Blowing bubbles
  • Taking 10 deep slow breaths
  • Giving themselves a big hug
  • Yoga poses
    • Downward Dog
    • Plank
    • Cobra
    • Boat