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 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
· 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
- 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